Stewards of a regenerative olive grove

Patrick and Claire

On our way home from a rose petal harvest in Sonoma, we made the two hour drive south to San Martin, California. Turning off Monterey road onto a short dirt driveway we slowly crept past a steel arched building muraled with Piet Mondrian's composition with red blue and yellow. Not sure where to go, we circled the other buildings until we met a generously bearded man donning a black fedora, dark sunglasses with t-shirt and jeans to match. We knew we were someplace cool. 

He greeted us softly and asked how he could help.

“We’re looking for Claire.’ 

He left quietly and shortly returned with her — straw hat; leopard print butterfly frames, short black summer dress, tattoos and ten-hole Doc Marten boots. Even cooler. 

“This is Patrick,’ she said. “He owns the place”

This is how we met the brilliant couple who have cultivated the world’s first Regenerative Organic Certified (ROC) olive grove. Frantoio. 

For the next hour we were taken on a transformative tour of their land and olive oil pressing mill operation. Patrick is best described as a seriously cool farmer and artisan with an encyclopedic mind. His knowledge of the land and the symbiotic relationship between plants and soil; his masterful degree of craftsmanship, and verbal articulation of his thinking is dizzying to behold. 

With that said, we’ll share about 10% of what we were able to retain.

In the mill room, we learned about (and salivated over) Olio Nuovo. “A sign of the harvest, Olio Nuovo is an unfiltered "new oil" that goes straight from the mill to the bottle, and is available for just a couple of months each year - typically from the beginning of harvest (early November) through the end of the year. This ultra-fresh olive oil has a relatively short shelf life and should be used within a few months of pressing.

Its ephemeral charms are best showcased when used as a finishing oil - drizzled over leafy greens with a squeeze of lemon, quickly tossed in pasta or for dipping fresh-baked bread. A traditional Italian harvest treat is to grill some fresh bread, Ciabatta or Baguette, rub with a clove of raw garlic slather with the fresh oil and a pinch of salt. Heaven!” 

Evan and Patrick

Back out and under a glorious (and not too hot) sunny sky, we slowly made our way around the Olive grove. Passing rows of olive trees blanketed with lush green ground cover, we paused here and there to learn about all the work that went into creating this paradise.

When Patrick first took over the farm from his father in 2020, it was already certified organic. He explained to us that while it was certainly a giant leap from conventional farming, it still followed a recipe requiring an array of costly inputs to fertilize and protect the grove. Faced with ‘olive leaf leprosy,’ Patrick weighed his options and ultimately decided to solve the problem literally from the ground up. His trees now drink compost tea and he’s replaced his farm machinery with a team of lawn mowing, hoof-aerating and ground-fertilizing goats guarded by an impressive llama named Kronk. 

impressive llama named Kronk

It is evident that all of their efforts are working. The neighboring conventional grass-covered farmland and over tilled fields are dry and depleted. Patrick explained that the same grasses that grow vibrantly on their goat-worked land experience much cooler soil temperatures than their neighbors do. 

This is stewarded nature at its best.

farmland contrast copy

We wrapped up our time with a mutual desire to work together. It didn’t hurt that Shirley Jo, our holistic esthetician slash product developer slash master storyteller gifted a jar of our Whipped Shea Butter with Olive Leaf. As she applied some to both Patrick and Clair, she excitedly mused on how our shea butter combined with their olive oil and leaf would make for a perfect union.

Save the date — that marriage is happening. 

Visit them at

shea butter


Dear Ms Healy,
A friend gifted me with an array of your organic products about 20 years ago. I will turn 80 this year. Excellent “genes” passed by my Italian & Greek family, because of your natural formulations of olive oil and other natural infusions, my skin is radiant.

Thank you!


Thank you for sharing about your tour of Frantoio Grove. I ordered some to their ROC EVOO and am excited to try it.
I’m a long time customer of Evan Healy and always looking forward to new products.
Thank you Evan & the Team! ❤️

Debbe Smith

I love everything that you do and all the experiences that you bring to us
Once upon a Time, I had one or two favorite products now I enjoy so many!
Thank you, Evan Healy, and team I adore you all!

Liz Olson

I’m so jealous of your adventure.
I would go there immediately if I still lived in CA. Now that I have more time. We moved to Florida 10 years ago to escape crazy LA.
VENICE BEACH to be exact.
I’m very happy that you found this wonderful oasis & I look SO forward to the new colabriation product.

Kathy Celsy

Thank you for this lovely story of discovery and appreciation. I am happy to know of Frantoio and look forward to enjoying their olive oil solo and their collaboration with Evan Healy.

Katherine McCleary

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