c Judy Ridgway : Olive Oil Expert

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Judy Ridgway

I am an author, journalist and broadcaster and one of the few independent experts on olive oil outside the producing countries. I have been working with olives and olive oil for more than twenty five years, travelling the olive oil world and tasting oils from the around the Mediterranean as well as from North America and the southern hemisphere.

I have written five books on olive oil as well as numerous articles and blog posts. My latest book, The Olive Oil Diet, written in conjunction with Dr. Simon Poole, a leading authority on the nutrition of olive oil and the Mediterranean Diet, was published by Robinson Books at the end of September 2016. It was winner of the "First in the world" Dun Gifford Special Award at the 2017 International Finals of the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards, after winning the national award in the Diet Section of the same competition earlier in the year. The book also won a Gold Diploma at the Oleocanthal International Society Health and Food Awards, 2017.

Then in October 2016 the International Wine and Food Society published my monograph Around the World with Olive Oil which looks at quality, style and flavour characteristics of olive oil round the world. It covers 25 different producing countries and references over 100 extra virgin olive oils.

My other books on olive oil include Remarkable Recipes featuring recipes from the people who really know about extra virgin olive oil – the producers.

Back in 1993 I was commissioned by the then EEC to write a paper on quality, taste and flavor in olive oil. This paper, which contains an extensive vocabulary for describing olive oil, is regularly up-dated and is currently available as a booklet. Click here to get your copy.

I sat as a judge for the prestigious international Leone d’Oro awards in Italy for eight years and my work now includes product assessment for both growers and buyers. In the early 2000s I devised and co-presented the first Savantes courses in Australia and subsequently in Spain, Italy and the UK. I now offer regular olive oil tasting and appreciation classes in London and Brighton and am available for staff training and tutored tasting sessions and seminars. Click here to learn more.

I am very often the first port of call for journalists, radio and TV researchers and producers planning articles and programmes on olive oil. I also appear from time to time on radio and TV as an interviewee talking about olive oil.

I have also written more than 60 books on various aspects of food and wine which are unrelated to olive oil, the latest being A Banquet on a Budget, published in May this year. Then in September, Quick and Delicious Vegetarian Meals was published. Earlier books include Food for Sport and Fitness and The Wine-Tasting Class: Expertise in 12 Tastings which was nominated for a Julia Child Award in America.

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