We needed some sort of cooking fat for our feast, and Sunset’s 21 olive trees—loaded with thousands of ripening olives—gave us the answer: olive oil. Plus, we’d be using olives that
otherwise dropped onto the ground and into the bushes, feeding only the birds and insects.
Unfortunately, they were feeding the insects a little too well. Our olives, we learned, were thoroughly infested with the maggots of olive fruit flies. So Team Olive picked olives at a nearby, fruit-fly-free olive farm instead and drove them to a commercial olive press, where we had planned to press our olives anyway. “Seeing the olives being crushed in the mill, and the sensuality of the smells and sounds of the mill—that was the best part,” says Trina Enriquez, Sunset Copy Editor. And tasting the jewel-green new oil, of course!
In The One-Block Feast, we detail every aspect of the making of oil, from picking to crushing to bottling.