Last week, I took my grandma to the Queen Creek Olive Mill for a blogger tour and tasting. My parents love the Olive Mill and I had been once before and really liked it (Stacie posted about our first trip here). I was so excited to hear about the event and even more excited that it was held on one of my days off.
Our tour began with an olive oil tasting, led by Perry, the owner of the Queen Creek Olive Mill. Perry told us about the history of the mill and how he got started. Perry and his wife Brenda were visiting from Detroit when they saw the abundance of olive trees and deciding to move to Arizona to make olive oil. All of the olive oil flavors they make start with extra virgin olive oil made from Arizona olive trees. The different varieties get their flavors in different ways, for example, the Meyer Lemon Olive Oil is made by cold-pressing whole lemons with the olives, and the Chile Olive Oil uses dried chiles infused in extra virgin olive oil.
During our tasting, we sampled five different flavors of olive oil and a balsamic glaze. Perry is a certified olive oil sommelier, so he taught us how to taste the olive oil correctly and what qualities to look for in the different oils. He also gave tips on what to use each oil for. We also got to sample their new limited edition Peach White Balsamic Glaze. They make a batch every spring and it sells out quickly every time. After the tasting, we went inside and saw the machines that make the oil. It was interesting to see all of the steps involved in turning olives into olive oil.
After the tour, we were treated to several different varieties of bruschetta. In addition to being an actual mill and a store, the Queen Creek Olive Mill houses a coffee shop and an eatery featuring everything from gelato and fresh bread to salads and cupcakes. It’s a nice way to showcase how the different olive oils and vinegars they make can be used in cooking.
I tasted three types of bruschetta. One was made with chardonnay herb mascarpone, green apple, and Delicate Extra Virgin Olive Oil, one with honey mascarpone, port wine grapes, Fig Balsamic, and Balanced Extra Virgin Olive Oil, and a seasonal variety using peaches. I really liked all three although the one with the grapes was my favorite.
My grandma also tried the seasonal peach bruschetta along with the hummus, Sweet Red Pepper Olive Tapenade, and Delicate Extra Virgin Olive Oil and caprese options. I was really impressed with all of the food and will definitely go back and eat there again!
They do use a lot of interesting flavors you might not be familiar cooking with. I love how they supply recipe cards for the different products. Each recipe also includes a wine pairing, so you don’t have to think about anything!
You can also pick up a bottle of wine to go with your food. The Queen Creek Olive Mill has a lot of live music on the weekends and you can purchase your wine and drink it on the grounds. They carry a lot of Arizona wines and have cute labels that tell you where they are from and how far that is from Queen Creek.
The Olive Mill even sells beauty products. Brenda makes several products under the Olivespa name using extra virgin olive oil along with other natural ingredients (she was making soap the day we visited).
My grandma and I ended up taking quite a few things home between the gift bags and purchasing things for ourselves and as gifts. The Vanilla Bean Olive Oil is great for baking and I can’t wait to make waffles with it. The Robust Extra Virgin Olive Oil is great for cooking heartier dishes. The Chocolate Olive Oil is perfect for brownies or mole sauce and it smells amazing. We brought home the Peach White Balsamic Glaze for my dad to use on salmon. The Meyer Lemon Olive Oil smells nice and fresh and is great on pasta. I didn’t buy any Roasted Garlic Olive Oil for myself but Perry suggested using it on grilled cheeses instead of butter and that’s all I’ve been thinking about ever since. The Fresh Crush Rosemary Olive Oil is made with fresh rosemary and would be tasty on vegetables or even turkey.
I picked up the Chile Olive Oil for a friend but it would be good on hummus or in scrambled eggs for a little spice. I’ve already tried the Fig Balsamic Glaze drizzled over pineapple pizza and it was amazing! I would definitely recommend trying it. We tasted the Strawberry Balsamic Glaze during the event and it was really good. It tasted a lot like strawberry jam and it would be really good on ice cream. Together we ended up with quite a few different flavors and some very happy friends!
I had so much fun at our blogger event and I can’t wait to go back to the Queen Creek Olive Mill. My mom was super jealous of us so I’m planning on taking her for her own tour. Plus, I need to grab some of that Roasted Garlic Olive Oil! I’m also excited to try some of the different foods at the eatery. Big thanks to the Queen Creek Olive Mill for a wonderful afternoon!