Few naturally sourced food items are as tasty, healthful and versatile as olive oil - a.k.a. "liquid gold." It's thought that farmers on Crete were the first to cultivate olive orchards for the production of oil, more than 4,000 years ago.
Which leads to the annual Olive Oil Celebration, sponsored by the Sacramento Italian Cultural Society. The $20 buy-in includes appetizers, meatballs, pasta and desserts. Plus, a tasting and seminar on what to do and what not to do when curing olives for home use. It will be hosted by olive producer Dave De Camilla.
Samplings and/or sales will include dozens of extra-virgin olive oils and balsamic vinegars, pastas and sauces, and a big selection of olives. As for door prizes: oil-and-vinegar gift sets, Italian foods and a dinner for four. Look for a book-signing by Richard S. Calhoun, author of "California Olives, Olive Oils and Vinegars."
The extravaganza will be 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday at the new Italian Center, 6821 Fair Oaks Blvd., Carmichael; (916) 482-5900, www.italiancenter.net.