Olive oil tasting and Spanish cooking

Andalucia, Iznajar, Spain

4 days from
per person

Average user rating

Holiday Itinerary

During the months from late October to March, the farmers in Andalucia begin the olive harvest and on this 3 night olive oil taster course and Spanish cooking holiday you will have the opportunity to learn about the olive cultivation and harvesting, production & health benefits.

The 'Protected Denominations of Origin' region is highly acclaimed for its exquisite Extra Virgin Olive Oil with numerous brands of oils have been awarded the most prestige prizes in the world, making it the perfect place to taste, experience and to learn to cook with some of the best internationally praised olive oil in the world.

Your host Chef Clive, who has been a professional Chef specialising in the Mediterranean cuisine for over 20 years, will also guide you through 2 hands-on Spanish cooking lessons where you will learn to cook typical Andalucian dishes with an emphasis on cooking with olive oil produced in the region.

By combining a fun, hands-on Spanish cooking class with culinary excursions to the olive grove and olive mill in the region and relaxing free time, this short cooking holiday promises not just a culinary experience but also a cultural one as you immerse yourself in the stunning countryside.

- Suitable for all cooking abilities from beginners to advanced
- Please note that this course runs for a minimum of 2 people
- Prices are per person based on 2 people sharing a twin/double room with private bathroom
- Please note that if you are travelling solo, you must book a twin/double room with ensuite bathroom for sole occupancy by adding a compulsory single supplement onto your booking during the booking process
- Your hosts are British/Japanese so all cooking classes are taught in English (or Japanese if required)

Olive oil taster course start days
- The olive harvest normally runs from October to March each year but this is subject to change according to the season and can be difficult to predict due to climate change
- This holiday is not available over Christmas and New Year
- If you can’t find the date you are looking for, please email hello@golearnto.com with your requirements as new dates can be added and alternative arrival dates can also be arranged on request

Olive oil cooking holiday itinerary
Please note that the itinerary may be subject to change according to the groups needs and wishes

Day 1 – Arrival at the Finca
- You are welcome to arrive at the Finca in the heart of Andalucian olive country any time after 4pm
- When you arrive you will enjoy welcome drinks with your hosts, Clive and Maki, and have some free time to settle in
- Early evening you will have an opportunity to take a stroll around the olive grove or the charming whitewashed lakeside village of Iznájar, perched on the rocky outcrop, where you will enjoy a spectacular view of the Lake of Andalucía
- Contemporary Andalucian cuisine and wine will be served by your hosts in the evening

Day 2 – Introductory Olive Oil Taster Couse 1 And Hands-On Cooking Lesson
- Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before setting off for a short trip through the beautiful countryside of Sierra Subbetica Natural Park where you will experience a beginner’s olive oil taster course
- You will be introduced to the olive cultivation culture : you will spend some time in the morning at the olive grove with the experts who will explain the different techniques of gathering olive fruits, how to identify different types of olives and their characteristics              
- You will visit an olive mill to learn about the process of olive oil production and during the harvest season in Autumn/Winter, it may be possible to see the actual process
- Around mid-day, you will head to the home of award-winning olive oil, the town of Priego de Cordoba; here you will have a private olive oil tasting with an authorised taster
- You will taste the different types of olive oil and learn about its uses and qualities as well as categories of olive oil
- You will have a free afternoon to have lunch and explore Priego de Cordoba which is a home of Baroque heritage
- In the early evening you’ll take part in a hands-on cooking lesson learning how to cook a full typical Spanish menu with an emphasis on cooking with olive oil
- Dinner will follow your cooking lesson as you enjoy the food you have prepared accompanied by a glass or two of wine

Day 3 – Introductory Olive Oil Taster Couse 2 And Hands-On Cooking Lesson
- Enjoy breakfast at your leisure
- A visit to the Regulatory Board of Protected Denomination of Origin Priego de Córdoba
- You will taste more olive oil and learn sensory analysis of olive oil is the evaluation of an oil's organoleptic attributes, which are appreciated through the senses of smell and taste.
- In the early evening you’ll take part in a hands-on cooking lesson learning how to cook a full typical Spanish menu with an emphasis on cooking with olive oil
- Dinner will follow your cooking lesson as you enjoy the food you have prepared accompanied by a glass or two of wine

Day 4 – Departure
- After breakfast guests are asked to check-out of their rooms ready for departure taking home with them full basic knowledge of olive oil and new cooking skills and an insight into Andalucian life that will stay with them long after the holiday is over

About the hosts
- Owner Chef Clive is Welsh, and with his Japanese wife Maki, they have been running a gourmet B&B approved by the regional Government of Andalusia since 2006 - They had a notable mention in the Spanish Condé Nast Traveller in May, 2017
- Guests from all over the world are warmly welcomed at their rustically restored finca (farmhouse), and they offer a relaxed and friendly atmosphere where you can cook to your hearts content in absolute comfort
- Clive’s laid-back style, gentle nature and his dry wit will increase your confidence in cooking and inspire your imagination
- He is a professional chef of the highest calibre for almost 30 years, with a distinguished career in the UK
- Clive is one of a few chefs to be selected for his original recipes to have been featured in a cookbook released in December 2018 - Andaluz: A Food Journey Through Southern Spain, by Fiona Dunlop

What will I learn?
- All about olive oil; the tasting, uses, characteristics and production methods
- Experience an olive harvest and meet the local farmers (not guaranteed)
- The history of Andalucian cuisine
- How to select fresh, seasonal ingredients
- How to cook a full Andalucian menu (dishes change each lesson) during a hands-on cooking lesson
- How to cook with olive oil and when to use it when olive oil is at its best

Teaching method
- Olive oil taster course is taught by the qualified and authorised olive oil tasters of PDO Priego de Cordoba
- Cooking session is done in a relaxing and informative manner and is fun-filled
- Small group tuition to allow individual attention
- Cooking session is hands-on and focuses on the actual cooking and preparing dishes, rather than the preparation work (i.e. peeling and chopping vegetable etc)
- Participants are well-informed in case special any attention is required with the preparation work
- Introduction to the use of Spanish ingredients, cooking method and traditional cooking appliances
- Lots of useful cooking tips, background of ingredients and recipes

Sample Spanish menu
- Gazpacho con cilantro (Gazpacho with wild coriander)
- Remojón con vinagre de sésamo (Salt cod and orange salad with sesame dressing)
- Codornices con higos (Quails with spiced figs),
- Lubina al sal con salsa de pimientos rojos y aceite de oliva (Salt roast seabass with charred
sweet red pepper and olive oil salsa)
- Tarta de limón con miel de lavanda (Lemon tart with lavender scented honey)
- Merengue escalfado con natilla de almendras (Poached  meringue with almond custard cream)

Accommodation in the Spanish Finca
- Your 150 year old Finca has just 4 rooms: 3 standard twin/double rooms and 1 suite (to book the suite, please add this extra on during the booking process) and is situated in Iznájar, a small hilltop Moorish village overlooking a romantic lake lies in Parque Natural de las Sierras Subbéticas in the southern part of the province of Córdoba
- Tastefully restored to retain the rustic charm, your standard room has twin beds or a double bed, private bathroom and a delightful view
- All prices are based on two persons sharing the twin/double standard rooms with private bathrooms; singles will have to book these rooms for sole occupancy and a compulsory supplement must be added during the booking process as sharing as a solo traveller is not possible on this holiday
- The Finca features a swimming pool, reading room, DVD library and more
- There is WiFi in communal area and in some guest rooms; however, a fast or reliable connection cannot be guaranteed due to the rural location
- Your hosts have two dogs and a cat, but they are never allowed in the finca

Experience olive oil tasting and go learn to cook authentic Andalucía dishes in the heart of Andalucía, Spain, immerse yourself in the culture and share your passion for food with others on this unique learning holiday with a difference.