ONE OF THE LAST TRADITIONAL OLIVE OIL MILL.
Around Elche there were about 25 olive oil mills in the middle of the twentieth century. Actually there are 3. One of them is “Almazara Candela”. Today most of the olive oil mills work by centrifugation, with modern automated systems, but this is one of the last that is still working with the traditional extraction system of hydraulic presses.
|Candela´s presses working.|
This olive oil mill is situated between olive trees, very near to Elche, 3 minutes by car from General Hospital (Lat. 38°15'3.84"N, Long. 0°39'41.50"O). It´s recommended to study the map before going there. Just before arriving, take as a reference a tall phone mast that is next to the mill. When you arrive you will find an old house, but not a placard of the oil mill.
|Tall phone mast that is next to the mill|
The Almazara Candela began operating in its current location in 1925, with a stone mill pulled by mules and two hand presses. In 1932 the first hydraulic press was installed.
About 80 “capachos” (like a circular carpet made up with polypropylene rope), are put in every press during two hours, and olive oil is separated by decanting of the obtained juice. Once extracted the olive oil, it´s stored in a stainless steel drums. This method is called “first cold pressure”, and many people say that this procedure gives the olive oil a more traditional flavor.
Putting crushed mass on the “capachos”.
“Capachos” in the press and dripping olive oil.
Along the year you can buy there virgin olive oil in plastic bottles of 2 or 5 liters. The work season goes from November to January, and then it´s possible to buy unfiltered olive oil, a special choice for olive oil lovers.
|Virgin olive oil.|