Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil - Tom Mueller It can be disheartening to read about the extraordinary benefits of pure, fresh olive oil, only to be told you're not likely to get it unless you grow and process your own olives. True extra virginity is mighty scarce. That pretty bottle of oil on your shelf for which you paid a premium price has probably been defiled more than once before being dressed up and sold as a virgin. Let the buyer beware. Neither the sellers nor the regulatory agencies are looking out for your interests. There are a few honest producers, but they are being driven out of the market by the charlatans who can sell their trashy oil at lower prices.This book is quite thorough for its length. It's primarily devoted to the worldwide history of olive oil adulteration and the corruption, ignorance, and apathy that allow it to continue. You also get to learn about various methods of olive oil production, the qualities and flavors it should have, and some fascinating historical uses of the oil. A lot of people think a good olive oil should be mild in flavor and smell. If yours doesn't have distinct bitter, peppery, and fruity qualities, both you and your oil have been had. That bite and burn as it goes down your throat is what gives it the health-promoting qualities you're paying for. If it's bland and odorless, it has been refined, blended with seed oils, deodorized to fake you out, and very possibly even colorized to make it look greener and more authentic. Some of the worst adulteration of olive oil happens right here in the U.S., where there is almost no regulatory oversight. The only way things will change is through consumer awareness and demand for a better product. If you care about extra-virgin olive oil, stop fooling yourself and wasting your money on falsely labeled, potentially harmful oils. This book is long overdue. **Addendum: If you're an olive oil fan and this all sounds too discouraging, don't despair. All is not lost. The author has a website where you can find information about how to choose high quality olive oils, and where you can find reputable sources from which to purchase them. www.extravirginity.com