Oil Mill of Bendilló
Old oil mill that continues to produce in an artisanal way, wich was rebuilt in 1993.
Olive trees’ farming was very present in Galicia since the time of the Romans. Already the early settlers ate olives, although they were unaware of the methods of extracting the oil. The Romans were those who taught these methods that were transmitted throughout the territory. Galicia became one of the conquered territories that more oil exported to Rome in the 1st and 2nd centuries. This way of farming disappeared throughout the territory at the time of the Catholic Monarchs, in a policy of favouring other parts of their kingdom. They ordered to pull up a great amount of olive trees and farming them was banned.
In the valley of Quiroga, in Lugo, the olive trees´ farming is still developed and oil is made in traditional way. It is known as the "gold of the Sil" for its extraordinary quality.
Bendilló keeps one of the mills that are used to make oil. It is about 300 years old. It is owned by Guillermo Nogueira. It consists of a “pía de moer”, which is a circular stone with canals in the margins, and that is inside another wheel, the “Moema” which is spun by the force of a donkey or mule. The olives are put into a wooden hopper by hand and gradually fall and are smashed. Once they are made into paste, they are moved to and pressed in the olive press to get the oil. The olive stone is used as fuel.
To reach the village of Bendilló, we leave the town hall of Quiroga at the street Real. We take the N-120 road towards Ponferrada and in about ten minutes, we will have to turn left. We go on towards the village and soon we will see the building where the mill is on the right.
Every year in May, an exhibition of oil is held in this place. It was declared a Touristic Festivity of Interest in Galicia. The activity focuses on watching all the process of the oil production in the traditional way.
Bendilló Olive Oil Mill
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