The Gordal olive, sometimes called Sevillano or Queen olive, is typical of the Seville region of Andalusia in southern Spain and produces a plump, large caliber oval fruit hence the name which translates to “the fat one.” Gordal are harvested in September and typically have a low yield. Because of their low oil content, they are not used in olive oil production but enjoyed as a table olive instead. Losada cure the pitted Gordal with lye and a neutral brine to achieve a balance between salinity and bitterness allowing the delicate flavor of this variety to come forward. As a large caliber pitted olive, these are excellent to stuff with cheeses, peppers, anchovies and garlic for appetizers, for use in olive breads, and for chopping into tapenade and sauces.
For 60 years, Aceitunas Losada have produced table olives in Andalusia, Spain in the Guadalquivir Valley outside the town of Carmona. Controlling the entire process from hand harvesting their own groves to curing and packaging in their own facility, Maria and Luis Losada have overseen the transformation of a commercial olive operation to an innovative and artisanal practice in its second generation of family farming. Although working in a facility with modern infrastructure for processing, Aceitunas Losada maintain traditional practices by cultivating heirloom olive varieties, curing with natural methods which take 12 months to complete, and pruning their groves manually by the desvareto method specific to each tree in contrast to the mechanical methods applied in high density olive farming. The trimmings are used as a natural fertilizer to be tilled back into the soil which along with the biodiverse use of cover crops prevent the need for chemical fertilizers and strengthen the soil against erosion which commonly affects industrial olive groves. Additionally, these ecological methods allow wildlife to thrive on the farm. The Losada family understand that in order to progress it is necessary in some aspects to go back in time.