Several beers and two olive oils from two Clovis businesses are in the running for the 2016 New Product Award at next week’s Fresno Food Expo.
ENZO Olive Oil Company entered its award-winning Tyler Florence Test Kitchen EVOO and its first fused — as opposed to infused — ENZO Organic Clementine Crush olive oil into the contest. 559 Beer is in the running for the award as well, with eight unique flavored beers.
Foodies can try these products and more at Expolicious, to be held from 5 to 8 p.m., Thursday, July 28 at the Fresno Convention Center. The public food tasting event is likely to sell out. It showcases more than 150 food growers, producers, brewers and winemakers from within the San Joaquin Valley.
ENZO Olive Oil
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Tyler Florence Test Kitchen Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a balanced blend of ENZO Arbequina, Arbosana and Koroneiki organic estate-grown olives.
It was blended specifically for Chef Tyler Florence for use in his restaurant, Wayfare Tavern, which was named a Top 100 Restaurante in San Francisco.
ENZO Olive Oil also partnered with Williams Sonoma on the oil, which has a smooth, buttery, grassy taste and a mild peppery finish. It is available in all Williams Sonoma stores in the U.S. and Canada, including locally in the Fig Garden Village location.
The olive oil hit shelves in April, but it’s already extremely popular, said ENZO Olive Oil Company sales and marketing coordinator Kari Ball.
“It’s the No. 1 selling olive oil at Williams Sonoma,” she said. “It also won a gold medal at the New York International Olive Oil competition, probably the most prestigious award for olive oil. That was exciting, especially because we just launched it.”
The Ricchiuti family has been farming in the Valley for more than 100 years, but just planted its olive orchard in 2008. The first harvest for ENZO Olive Oil was in 2011, Ball said.
The family has perfected its blends over the last five years; oils from last year’s harvest won 60 awards, Ball said.
“We are four months from harvesting again, in November. Hopefully that’s just as successful,” she said.
Another award-winner entered in this year’s Fresno Food Expo is ENZO Organic Clementine Crush.
“We infuse olive oils, which means we add the flavoring to olive oil after it’s been milled,” Ball explained. “But this one is co-milled, which means whole clementines are crushed with the olives during the milling process. It’s super fragrant and has that true citrus essence because you’re using the whole fruit. You get the essential oils from the rind, all of the juice is spun out and you have this beautiful, really fragrant oil.”
Clementine Crush has been so successful that the company is looking into doing a series of co-milled, or fused, olive oils, Ball said.
Clementine Crush is available at Enzo’s Table at the corner of Willow and Shepherd.
“The store is 7 miles from where the olives are milled in Madera,” Ball said. “Our groves are in Madera and the mill is onsite. So from picking the olives to pressing the oil is only 3 or 4 hours.”
The Williams family started brewing 559 Beer, headed by brewmaster Rhett Williams, about four years ago. In May 2015, the family opened 559 Beer tasting room in Old Town Clovis, where its eight varieties are on tap.
The company entered its 559RFA (Raisin Farmer Ale), 559CIA (Clovis Independence Ale), 559WPA (Wawona Peach Ale), 559FGS (Fig Garden Stout), 559CBA (Cheryl’s Belair Ale), 559BBA (Bourbon Barrel Ale), 559IPA (California 559 IPA) and 559WSA (Wawona Strawberry Ale) into the New Product Award category at Expolicious.
“559 has really good beer and its unique taste should bring people in,” said the company’s social media coordinator, Laura Ramos. “Rhett Williams is the brewmaster and loves to incorporate all of these unique flavors, which sets 559 Beer apart from other companies.”
The beers are infused with locally-grown fruits and many pay tribute to members of the Williams family, including Cheryl’s Belair Ale for Rhett’s mom, Cheryl, and Raisin Farmer Ale for Rhett’s grandfather.
“559 is family owned and operated,” Ramos said. “Everything from the brewing to the packaging is done by the family. The packaging is done in-house. We don’t have stickers on the battles; we have a ceramic decor, all of this is on the bottle, which makes this environmentally safe and sustainable.”
559 Beer is available in Save Mart, Foods Co and Costco, Ramos said.
What: Expolicious (6th annual Fresno Food Expo)
When: 5 to 8 p.m., Thursday, July 28
Where: Fresno Convention & Entertainment Center, 848 M St., Fresno.
How much: $50; tickets may be purchased online until 3 p.m. July 28