The Suatoni family has been growing and pressing their own olive oil for generations. They cultivate more than 1000 olive trees without the use of pesticides or herbicides. Our olives are cultivated with the love and care that comes from lifetimes of experience.
Amelia Oil is made from a blend of Frantoio, Moraiolo, Leccino and Rajo olives. The flavour varies subtly from year to year depending on the rainfall and temperatures during the growing season. Our oil has very low acidity, which is one of main criteria for a good extra virgin oil – Amelia Oil is around .08% which is well below .15%, the required level for extra virgin labeling standards.
At Amelia Oil we believe in fresh oil. We receive our oil from the Suatoni’s within weeks of it being pressed, usually in January. Olio nuovo is incredibly green and fresh. To ensure that you get the freshest oil possible each of our bottles bears the harvest date. We encourage our customers to order their oil at the beginning of the year when it is at it’s freshest, and to use it up within the calendar year like the Italians do. It will keep much longer if stored in a cool place away from light.
Rachel met Francesco Suatoni when she was living in Amelia.
She was keenly interested in olive oil production and Francesco was happy to be her teacher. He ran the local olive mill and introduced her to life on the olive farm.
The Suatoni family have been growing and producing olive oil in Amelia for over four generations. Each family member is involved in some aspect of the production of the olive oil from pruning the trees to bottling the oil.
Today Francesco Suatoni heads the daily business operations but his father Vincenzo and his mother Anna are still very much involved. New to the team is Francesco’s fiancé, Giuditta who is also from another olive growing family. The family’s commitment to producing excellent oil is evident in the pride they take in their farm. The trees are expertly pruned and the fields are lush and green, the sign of a healthy herbicide-free farm. Their mill or frantoio is an immaculate operation.
In the Suatoni household, a family meal often consists of everything produced completely on their own farm, including the wine. It’s impressive and we’ve been lucky enough to share the experience as their guests.
Il Frantoio : The Olive Mill
The frantoio di Suatoni is a wonderful example of the best of modern technology when it meets with the Old World sensibility. The Suatoni’s use a modern centrifuge system that extracts the oil without heating it – cold pressed. The whole operation is efficient and immaculately clean which is critical for producing excellent oil.
This has earned the Suatonis a good reputation with the locals who come to the mill to have their olives pressed. Not many farmers have their own mills because of the cost and they rely on mills such as these to get their olives pressed.
During harvest time the frantoio is a social gathering spot for the locals. As the farmers wait for their olives to be pressed they compare notes on the growing season and sample olio nuovo on grilled bread. The business of pressing oil during the harvest season often goes on into the night and the frantoio is equipped with a kitchen and dining room with it’s own hearth for grilling. Workers and clients are always well fed. It’s the Italian way!
The frantoio welcomes visitors year round and a tour is available if you call ahead.
Amelia – A Town in Umbria
Amelia often gets confused with being one of us. It’s actually the name of an ancient hill town in the heart of Umbria. It may seem a little off the beaten path to the average tourist but actually it’s only about an hour and a half from Rome and a half hour from Orvieto.
The fact that there are so few tourists speaks to one of the many charms of this town. It is a walled hill town dating back to pre-Roman times. Francesco’s frantoio and olive groves lie just beyond the walls of the town. The top of the town is an excellent vantage spot to take in the lush rolling terrain, which is dotted with olive trees.
A trip to Amelia is a reminder that there was a time when the pace of daily life was once much slower, and that there are still places where everyone in a town knows each other. After visiting Amelia you will understand why Italy was the birthplace of Slow Food, and perhaps even “slow life.”
When Rachel returned Canada from living in Italy in 2005, she decided the one thing she could not live without was olive oil from Amelia: “I knew that I could never find the same quality of oil.” She brought back with her to Canada 80 litres of olive oil and used it to convince her mother Rebecca to start a business importing olive oil from Amelia. Rebecca’s passion for cooking and great sales skills made her the perfect partner. This is how Amelia Oil was born in 2006.
Rachel Black – Rachel was working on her doctorate in Anthropology in Italy with a focus on food when she fell in love with the olive oil she tasted in Amelia, Umbria. She forged a friendship with the family who owned the olive mill and they taught her all about the cultivation and production of their liquid gold.
Today Rachel runs the Gastronomy Program at Boston University. She has taught at the University of Gastronomic Science in Pollenzo, Italy and makes regular trips to Italy to do research and enjoy the food and wine. She is the author of the book – Porta Palazzo –The Anthropology of an Italian Market and the co-editor Wine and Culture: Vineyard to Glass
She loves her visits to the olive mill in Amelia to see Francesco, where she gets to taste the latest oil and hear all about the growing season. Rachel has taken on a consulting role in Amelia Oil , her Italian language skills come in handy.
Rebecca Black – Rebecca handles the daily operation of the business and imports the fresh oil annually from Italy to Vancouver. She loves cooking and gardening and spreads the word about the virtues of this exceptional oil. “I love meeting people who share a passion for good food and turning them on to our oil.” She maintains that “the best way to sell our olive oil is to let people taste it.” She often welcomes customers into her home to taste the difference between our fresh oil and supermarket oil. Most people are easily converted. For Rebecca, a trip to Umbria, from time to time reinforces the value of knowing where and how your food is produced.
Buy Amelia Extra Virgin Oil Now!