Grassy Spur Grove of Stony Creek have been awarded Gold for their Picholine and Silver for their Picual in the “world’s best olive oil” competition in New York.
There were over 900 entries from all over the world so winning was no mean feat.
“All our oils have a unique rich and spicy flavour perfect for drizzling over salads, roast vegetables or simply enjoyed with balsamic vinegar and crusty bread,” said owner Helen Wright.
Helen and her husband Peter first planted olive trees back in 2005 when they purchased an empty 20-acre paddock. They then bought another 7 acres next door. They have since subdivided by slicing off 2 acres and a neighbour’s son now owns that piece.
Helen was a nursing sister and Peter still works as an IT consultant.
Peter is often away for a week at a time, travelling to New Zealand, Western Australia and Canberra.
“I work when the phone rings,” said Peter. “If it stops ringing, I’ll stop working.”
They both have their work cut out for them at Grassy Spur and this year it looks as though they will get around 6 tonnes of olives.
“It’s not as much as last year,” said Helen. “ They’re like apple trees, you get a good crop every second year.”
Peter adds that they are like a thoroughbred racehorse, sensitive to disease but they always perform.
The grove sits atop rolling hills where the views are breathtaking. The westerly winds do whip up the valley but that’s a small price to pay.
Helen and Peter built their own home and their vision for this stunning place is fast being realised.
There are trout in the dam, bees for honey and even truffles.
“Last year the lady came out with her dog and dug out a 60 gram truffle with a spoon,” said a delighted Helen. “ She is about to come back and see if we have more this year.”
The process for making olive oil is fascinating. Pickers have come in to hand pick the olives, which are then taken into the shed where the leaves are blown off. The olives then drop down where they are washed and sent up into a machine that works its magic and voila, out comes extra virgin, cold pressed olive oil.
“Passion and spirit drive our oil,” says Helen. “Growing olives, producing olive oil and creating gorgeous honey have become our pride and our passion.”
Helen and Peter created their grove in Stony Creek not only because it is the most beautiful part of the world but because it also has ideal growing conditions.
For more information go to their website. www.grassyspurolives.com.au