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A Castle, turned into a palace serves as family home and embassy of olive oil
After our tasting and magnificent lunch that lasted 3 hours, Señor Vaño gave us a tour of the private rooms of the palace which has 16 bedrooms.
The castle of Castillo de Canena, proudly surveys the rooftops of the town of Canena and surrounding lush country side of olive groves as it has, according to company lore, since it was built as a fortress by the Arabs on the site of a Roman settlement before the 15th Century. In 1538, it was acquired by Francisco de los Cobos, Secretary to Charles V. He transformed the Castle into an elegant Palace, where the Emperor himself stayed. The Castle was declared a National Monument in 1931 and later restored and preserved by the Vaño clan as a family home.
The large rooms are surprisingly lacking in ostentation. They feel like you could comfortably sink down into one of the over-sized sofas with a good book in front of a roaring fire. Filled with antiques, wall hangings, and art from the ages, the atmosphere is one of slightly waning, but genteel elegance.
But if that’s not an option, Tom Mueller, author of Extra Virginity — the Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil has a partial list of authentic oils on his blog.