The concept of Twisted Tree Olive Oil Store was many years in the making. I grew up in the picturesque coastal town of Tutukaka, Northland. Like many Kiwi’s my childhood was spent around farms, the bush and the ocean. Long summer days were spent fishing, diving and exploring, which instilled a lifelong sense of pride and connection with the natural treasures Aotearoa New Zealand has to offer.
It was this connection which led me into a career as a chef. Training in the New Zealand Army and later cooking in restaurants around the country, I continued to develop this relationship with the high quality produce New Zealand has to offer. One of my favourite products to work with soon became Extra Virgin Olive Oil for many reasons. The health benefits, the variety of flavour profiles and the stories behind the brands. It’s such a versatile product that can be used in so many ways, from finishing a simple salad to baking a brownie, it’s a sure way to improve your food and give it a unique twist. The more I worked with it the more I was blown away by the magic that can be packed into a single bottle.
One of my other great passions is travel and I spent large periods of my late teens and early 20’s working and living in different parts of the world including Mexico, Canada and the United Kingdom. It was during these trips that the idea of Twisted Tree Olive Oil Store began to take shape. Seeing and working with the local produce, I couldn’t help but notice how easily high quality goods were obtained by foodies overseas and the selection they have at their fingertips. I compared this to some of the products that exist in New Zealand that require significant hunting and shopping around to obtain. I also noticed if you were able to find the right producers the quality in New Zealand easily matched and in many cases exceeded products overseas.
So, together with the support of some friends and partners I began the exciting journey of seeking out and sourcing some of the best olive oils and related products around the country. The timing seemed perfect as the olive oil industry in New Zealand, which was virtually non-existent until 20 years ago, was really taking off and gaining a lot of international recognition for its quality. Discovering so many wonderful products loved by chefs and foodies alike I selected a few of the favourites, then assembled them all together in one place for the gourmet shoppers’ convenience.
Launching online in August 2019 and with the intention of opening a store front in the future. Our mission is to track down and seek out some of New Zealand’s most talented producers and bring their truly unique products together in one great selection right at your fingertips.
Founder Jared Maxwell