Back Olive It! Part I.

Well, Here we go! After much procrastination and more than a little cajoling I have finally sat down for a minute and started what I hope will be a fun, informative and interesting conversation on all things olive. From my first sip of olive leaf tea in the morning until my CBD olive oil before bed I literally live and breathe olives.

For the last 20 years, I have been growing and making olive oil, I have been on an official certifying taste panel for California olive oil, I judge olive oil competitions and am currently the head judge for the Orange County Olive Oil Competition.

I am a certified Master Miller and have even help teach olive oil milling classes at University of California, Davis and Fresno State University. I have had the opportunity to travel to many of the other olive oil producing areas of the world and gain knowledge and insight with every trip.

I currently manage over 350 acres of olive trees throughout the southern California area. These groves span many unique climates from the ocean side to the extremes of the low desert and everything in between.

All this keeps me on top of new innovations as well as old tried and true techniques. I am an avid cook with several years of experience working in some wonderful restaurants around the United States.

Before getting all in on the olive oil business I spent several years in the wine industry, from a sommelier with a Wine Spectator Award winning wine list, to running a winery and making wines at a winery here in Temecula. We still grow grapes here and I continue to make some wine, as we say it takes a lot of wine to make good olive oil.

We will discuss everything from the trees to the table. All subjects are open for discourse. It is important to note that this is a two-way street. Your questions and most importantly your comments are vital to keeping this a vibrant and informative dialogue. Over the course of these many years we have had lots of questions from our guests and clients.

From our tasting rooms around southern California to our ranch tours, seminars, and cooking classes these questions run the gamut. I will start off by addressing some of the more frequently asked questions in as much detail as necessary. If at any time more detail is needed, or any further explanation required feel free to ask.

We will explore how we grow the trees, harvest the delicious (ha ha!) fruit and turn it into yummy olive oil. There will be a little bit of history and a touch of chemistry. We might even include some math, art and of course science.

Although this might bring you nightmares from high school we will try to keep it light, interesting and applicable to everyday life. Everything from “What does Extra Virgin really mean” to “can you really cook with olive oil?”.

Once again we really want your questions, comments and opinions to keep this interactive and relevant.

Next week will start at the beginning with some basics. What is olive oil? So, come on a journey together as we explore, Olive It!