Olive Oil: Bitter is Better? - Page 2
Interestingly, it is also now recognized that the bitterer the olive oil tastes, the more polyphenols it contains. Polyphenols protect cells and body chemicals against the damage caused by free radicals, and can possibly deactivate substances that play a role in the growth of cancers. Additionally, they make the oil last longer.
One of the bitterness factors comes from the type of olives used for the oil production. If you go to Apulia, the region forming the high heel on the "boot" of Italy, you will encounter the Peranza variety. Its distinct bitterness makes it an ideal candidate for a first pressed, extra virgin version of this wonderful addition to the daily diet.