Meet Westerly Isbaih - Olive Oil Judge and Producer from Alto

By Kate Walsh

Meet Westerly from Alto Olives based in the foothills of Australia’s Great Dividing Range.
Best thing about being an olive oil judge?
I really love the taste of extra virgin olive oil so I’m so privileged to get to taste the best olive oils from around the country.

Biggest mistake that consumers make when buying olive oil? 

Thinking that because an olive oil is from Spain or Italy it is automatically better than an Australian olive oil. Not that there aren’t beautiful oils from overseas but a lot of what ends up on our shelves are not those oils.

One thing that we can do to change our food system?
Get more people back in the kitchen and less watching cooking shows. And I think it should be mandatory that all school age kids should spend time on a working farm.

What was your job before you discovered the joys of olive oil? 
I was an actor before I got into the food industry!

What will you be buying from the Christmas Market and from whom?
I think I will be buying some of the amazing products from the Commissary Kitchen by Rob Hodges. I’m really excited about the idea of the chef doing all the hard work cooking a terrine, duck confit or pate. A rich special treat that I don’t have to make!

  • RECIPE: Misto Olive Marinade

    This family recipe has been a favourite for many years.
  • Take 500g ALTO MISTO Olives, rinse and place in a serving bowl  

  • Add …
    2 – 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
    bruised 2 fresh bay leaves 
    torn 1 whole red banana chilli 
    sliced zest of 1 orange
    zest of half a lemon
    1 teaspoon of fennel seeds
    2 small cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
    juice of 1 orange
    50ml ALTO Chardonnay Vinegar
    50ml ALTO Lemon or Mandarin Oil
  • Mix well  
For best results, marinate in the fridge overnight and serve at room temperature.