This is not just olive oil….etc

This is not just olive oil...

Imagine some languorous background music, say “At the River” by Groove Armada, something smoky and sensuous. Now listen to the voice over, it’s sultry and smouldering, it’s probably Dirvla Kirwan, she sounds like the kind of girl who will magic up sex on a plate whilst floating around the place in something flimsy.

This is not just olive oil…

“Thick, golden, fragrant – brought to you in an empty coca cola bottle that has been washed in the ancient fountains of the village square once the goats have been pushed aside. Made from the juiciest of organic olives picked by artisan farmer’s wives whilst artisan farmers drink cay and tinker with their tractors instead of working. Slowly crushed under the mighty stone mill wheels whilst irritable men argue over the price and come to blows over the percentages. This is not just olive oil; this is Kirazli’s olive oil!”

These are not just cherries…

“Plump, blushing, juicy – brought to you in a plastic bag dripping water and hung on your garden gate; grown organically in sun dappled orchards because fertilizer is expensive and the trees grow anyway; hand picked by artisan farmer’s wives because, once again, the boys are in the tea shop. These are not just cherries; these are Kirazli’s organic cherries!”

This is not just goat’s cheese…

“Tart, crumbly, calcium white – brought to you in a baggy from the village shop with the bottom pouchy with whey; made from the milk of goats that run wild and free and terrorise your dog and eat your marigolds; hand made by those bloody versatile artisan farmer’s wives because no bloke is going to touch a goat’s boobs. This is not just goat’s cheese; this is Kirazli’s goat’s cheese!”

Please don’t think I am being totally facetious. The point is the oil tastes amazing even though it doesn’t have a portentous label on the front that makes it look like a medieval cure for scrofulous.

The cherries are amazing because they are naturally ripe now, not brought to the shop via some stop start ripening process that means they end up being nothing more than red at the right time.

The cheese tastes fantastic because we get our hands on it just after it is made, because natural goat’s cheese goes off faster than a British football player can get a super injunction.

It’s not romantic, it’s not food porn, you won’t see a Turkish housewife coming over all Nigella down the village shop because the oil has a particular sheen this year; that only happens in countries were you don’t actually have to pick olives yourself in the freezing cold of winter.

This is good food and it’s appreciated as good food, pure and simple, without all the rather unnecessary raptures of epicurean ecstasy that those of us far removed from the fields feel we should attach to food or indeed to anything made by hand the hard way.

Here comes that music again. I think Dirvla’s in the bath now; she must have finished her supper and is having a little me time in the bubbles…..

This is not just soap…

Rich, moisturising, organic – hand made in the traditional way for eons, because there is no easy way to do this; a mixture of fragrant herbs and golden olive oil poured into huge wooden moulds knocked up from bits of timber lying around and third hand nails; hewn into blocks with a chainsaw by artisan farmers because wielding a chainsaw is even more fun than drinking tea. This is not just olive oil soap; this is Kirazli’s olive oil soap!