Renowned for its olive grove, whose product has earned the Remarkable Site of Taste label, the town of Nyons is a great place for food-lovers to visit in Provençale Drôme. Its famous black olive, called the Tanche, is considered to be one of France's best olives. Enjoyed as is or in a tapenade, with aperitifs or in cooking, it's a must on any Provençal table.
This olive produces one of France's most flavoursome oils. The olive harvest takes place in the months of December and January. Then the olives are pressed in the two or three days following the harvest, to obtain a juice with many flavours. Benefiting from the PDO and AOC labels, Nyons olive oil is finely fruity, with aromas of green apple, hazelnut and almond, and its fragrance is reminiscent of freshly cut grass.
Nyons celebrates its olive on the Saturday before Christmas at the Pricked Olive Festival, with a programme including a market selling olives and related products, an olive-picking workshop in an olive grove, and a tasting of pricked, salted olives known as "olives piquées". To make this traditional preparation, the very first olives of the harvest are pricked all the way through and then sprinkled with salt, to temper their natural bitterness. However, you then have to wait for about ten days before eating them in this form.