What started out as a warm getaway from the chilly Detroit weather, actually turned out to be one of the most influential trips my wife and I ever decided take. In 1997, we decided to visit the Valley of the Sun, and was surprised to see the abundance of olive trees growing around the Phoenix area.
Intrigued and excited upon the discovery (and with some red wine inspiration) my wife and I had an idea. As a child to first generation Italian immigrants, I was exposed to olive oil and its significance in the kitchen at a young age. Why not take advantage of the fruitful environment of the Valley and produce olive oil ourselves?
With the support of my wife, we left Detroit in 1998, and relocated with our four children (and one on the way) to Phoenix, Arizona. Going into the project, with the intentions of producing olive oil solely as a hobby, 1,000 olive trees were planted on 100 acres in the city of Queen Creek. With the idea of providing the Arizona community with fresh, local, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, we built a 5,000 square foot shed, which eventually transformed into the Queen Creek Olive Mill you see today.
After two successful years of selling oil to the community, we wanted to offer something more. Our product line grew, increasing the number of cold pressed oils, vinegars, tapenades, and stuffed olives. A small café was built inside of the building, to provide guests a taste of the possibilities one can create with Extra Virgin Olive Oil. We strive to create an ‘Agriturismo’ atmosphere, which allows Queen Creek Olive Mill to become more of a destination and experience, rather than simply a store.
We are proud to say that we have created an olive oil empire in Arizona, supplying the Valley and its surrounding cities with farm fresh, local food and Extra Virgin Olive Oil. With the addition of three new retail stores across Arizona, Queen Creek Olive Mill makes it possible for our customers to have access to the highest quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil, while keeping it local.