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Feb 14, 2009 10:42 AM

Thick sludge in bottom of olive oil?

I was doing some shopping today and noticed some bottle of olive oil that looked interesting. However, they had a thick, globular substance in the bottom of the bottle. I've know unfiltered olive oils can sometimes have something similar, but that's sediment, and this didnt look like sediment. This looked almost like another kind of oil in the bottom, and didn't dissipate when the bottle was shaken. It was lighter than the olive oil, and looked almost like a lava-lamp.

It was fairly cold in the shop, so I'm wondering if that had something to do with it.

Does anyone know what this was?

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  1. Temperature is one factor; cold making it cloudier. Could you tell anything from the label about their filtering process?

    I think this web page is pretty informative about production processes, differences:

    2 Replies
    1. re: souvenir

      That does make sense, as it was quite cloudy. I'm fairly certain it was unfiltered. Perhaps the cold had made the sediment behave differently?

      1. Anyone else have any thoughts as to what this may have been? If it was cold, would it go away when the oil got back to room temperature?

        3 Replies
        1. re: aravenel

          How cold was it? I find it very hard to imagine it was so cold in a particular store that it would affect the way oil behaves.

          In any situation, yes, the oil should go back to normal when the temp warms back up... but that's assuming the store was around 40 F or below... which I'm sure it wasn't.

          1. re: aravenel

            If it is from cold--say it was just offloaded a truck, it will revert back once it warms up.

            Mine does this every winter and goes back to normal in the spring. It's in a cupboard, but my kitchen is cold and the cupboards are even colder--maybe @ 50 degrees. If it gets really cold out, even the corn and peanut oil will do this.

            1. re: dct

              It was probably 60, 55 degrees, perhaps a bit lower, in the store. Lots of doors opening and closing, and it was cold and windy outside. Don't know if they just came off the truck, but I don't think so.

          2. Cold olive oil gets a clumpy and cloudy layer on the bottom- a really cold bottle will go all semi-solid like that. If it wasn't some weird colour, like black, then it was just cold olive oil.

            It goes away if you set the bottle in a bowl of warm water.

            1 Reply
            1. re: sfumato

              That's a perfect description of what it was. I'll assume this is what it was. Thanks!