We are a family owned and operated olive farm located in Lake County, California: nine-and-a-half acres of volcanic, Lacustrine soils at 1300 feet in elevation. These are lakebed soils mixed with volcanic erosion from the hillsides and were created as the two million year-old nearby Clear Lake changed shape over the millennia. Our orchards are nestled among some of the best Sauvignon Blanc vineyards in California and share the afternoon breezes from the Lake.
We farm our four-and-a-half acres of producing trees according to California Certified Organic Farmers requirements, and have been certified organic since 2013. Our oil is certified Extra Virgin by the California Olive Oil Council and has been since the 2015 harvest. Our COOC-certified extra virgin olive oil assures our customers that it is free of any chemical processing, has been milled at a temperature less than 80 degrees Fahrenheit and has an acidity level of no greater than .5%. Consumers can be confident that the aroma and flavor profile of our oil carries no defects.
How It All Started
In 2008, we became entranced with the idea of growing olives after a week in Tuscany, where we stayed in an old stone farmhouse entirely surrounded by a centuries-old olive orchard.
Armed only with the experience and enthusiasm of long-time, mostly urban vegetable gardeners, we took up the challenge of finding out everything we needed to know about growing olives for oil in rural California.
After a year’s search, we found our future farm site in Lake County’s Big Valley, bordered by a tree-lined slough, hayfields and a vineyard. Now, 10 years later, we’re proud to offer up the big-flavored result: pungent and fruity extra virgin olive oil.
Growing Our Orchard
From the outset, we were determined to grow organic olives for a superior product we could be proud of. Organic methods improve the soil and produce higher-quality oil, so we started there. A side benefit is that our organic orchard and surrounding fallow fields are a safe environment for all manner of wildlife, such as great blue herons, owls, quail, gopher snakes, bobcats, and coyotes.
We began with 750 trees from the McEvoy tree nursery on two-and-a-half acres in 2010 and have expanded to over a thousand trees on nine acres. Thankful that we have a good supply of water, we use drip irrigation throughout the orchard and depend on a soil moisture testing system to limit our water to only what’s necessary.