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Robert Mondavi Institue Sensory Building

Sensory Evaluation of Olive Oil Certificate Course August 11-12, 2020


1. Due to the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) the Sensory Evaluation of Olive Oil Certificate Course is now POSTPONED until August 11 and 12.

2. The popular $125 value session "Will you taste my oil" is back!! Please email Shirley at spsli@ucdavis.edu for more details.


Designed for the beginning or experienced taster. Attendees receive a booklet with presentations, and a flash drive with presentations and supplemental materials.

• Evaluate more than 40 oils

• Review positive attributes and common defects

• Learn about the science of tasting from a sensory scientist with years of industry experience

• Understand strengths and weaknesses of standards

• Taste how harvest and processing variables affect sensory quality

• Taste olive oil and food pairing

• Participate in an exam to assess your progress


The course will be held in the beautiful Silverado Vineyard Sensory Theater at the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science. The course will include breakfast pastries and local coffee as well as lunch featuring seasonal ingredients.


Reviews from 2019 Course

"Presenters and their content and delivery were spot on for what we, as a diverse group of olive oil lovers, need to become discriminating tasters. I am impressed with the organization and how well the book was put together. This attention to detail mirrored the professionalism of all involved to make this a successful day for us."

"First day was excellent. Sue, and Dr Selina are knowledgeable people, and experts in their areas. You can know a lot but cannot teach. They can teach. Sue was able to walk with us and now I can identify an extra virgin oil in 1 day!"

"I'm in awe of how much I learned during this two day course. I came into it an olive oil novice and I feel so much more confident talking about extra virgin olive oil and understanding what I'm tasting. Thank you so much, Sue!"



Sue Langstaff is panel leader for the Applied Sensory olive oil sensory panel, which is accredited by the American Oil Chemistry Society and International Olive Council.  She is also the owner of Applied Sensory, LLC, which provides sensory consulting to the food, wine and beer industries. Sue is a judge at the Los Angeles International Olive Oil Competition and has been head judge at various international competitions. She is co-editor of the book Olive Oil Sensory Science (Wiley/ Blackwell, 2014) and is the creator of The Defects Wheel for Olive Oil. Sue was profiled in the bestseller Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal (W. W. Norton and Co., 2013) by Mary Roach.Sue has a M.S. from UC Davis where she studied Sensory Science, Enology and Brewing.

Selina Wang, PhD, is an extension specialist in the Department of Food Science and Technology and research director of the UC Davis Olive Center. Dr. Wang also is the leader of the UC Davis Olive Oil Laboratory, which provides research and analysis of olive oil and table olives. As research director, Dr. Wang has developed more than 60 research projects in table olives and olive oil. Dr. Wang is pursuing additional innovative research that seeks to deliver faster, better and cheaper methods for analyzing olive oil quality and authenticity.

Dan Flynn is executive director of the UC Davis Olive Center, which he has guided to international leadership in olive research and education. Dan also oversees the production of UC Davis Olive Oil and other olive products that help support the center. He served 16 years as a legislative and policy consultant in the California State Legislature and also managed a small farm prior to coming to UC Davis. He has a M.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University. Based on his achievements with the Olive Center, Dan has received top staff awards from the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and the chancellor of the university.



Sensory Evaluation of Olive Oil $675  (before June 15), $875 (after June 15)

Cancellations: 100% credit for future course if cancelled prior to June 15, 2020; 50% credit if cancelled prior to June 15, 2020; no credit after June 15, 2020.

IF YOU LIVE OUTSIDE THE USA: Please enter CA in the State Field. 95616 in the Zip Code Field and 555-555-5555 in the Telephone Field. You can enter your state/province, country, postal code and phone number in the supplemental fields provided. Once you submit the registration information  you will be redirected to a secure credit card site where you will be able to enter your credit card information with the correct address.


Hotel Reservation

Hyatt Place UC Davis

173 Old Davis Rd., Davis, CA 95616

530-756-9500 and mention "June sensory course"

Or book online:






Robert Mondavi Institue Sensory Building