“Nullamunjie won the association’s gold medal in 2012 and numerous silver and bronze medals.
“This year we won the Melbourne Show Fine Food Awards silver medal for extra virgin olive oil.
“Victoria produces about 44pc of the national olive oil harvest, so I was keen to support the Victorian awards.”
Mrs Paterson began marketing the olive oil in 2004 at farmers markets and door-to-door sales. But while looking for overseas markets, she encountered her biggest customer – and today exports 80pc of production to America.
The remaining 20pc is sold to many early customers who still make up her loyalty base; and used in the on-site restaurant.
The Pressing Shed café “came about because the pressing shed was sitting there unused for much of the year and I thought it was an opportunity to educate people about using olive oil,” Mrs Paterson said.
Adding an extensive kitchen garden and using fruit from the orchard planted after World War II and other local produce, Mrs Paterson uses olive oil in all the food she makes “and nothing leaves the kitchen without a drizzle on top”.
Diners can enjoy the ambience of the olive groves, the mountain views and scenery down the Tambo Valley and, closer to their feet, the chickens scratching in the garden – and food containing a peppery drop of sunshine.
Article sourceInspiration from Greece,