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Graza’s premium olive oils are supplied in Sriracha style bottles

Graza co-founder Andrew Benin doesn’t want you to appreciate his brand’s extra virgin olive oil, but he does want you to appreciate it. Since the start in January Graza convinces with its playful squeeze bottle packaging and makes you loyal fans with the quality of the oil it contains.

Graza’s cleverly named duo of extra-virgin olive oils – Sizzle for cooking and Drizzle for finishing – come in packaging that contrasts with the usual green-tinted glass bottles. Both the large 750ml Sizzle and the sturdier 500ml Drizzle are made from matte green plastic with a tip that looks like it was stolen from a bottle of Sriracha.

And while it’s a differentiator, the packaging is just the start Graza. The real star is the oil. Both sizzle and drizzle are obtained from Andalusian picual olives. Those picked and pressed for Drizzle are young and green, while those used for Sizzle are about a month more mature, giving their oil a milder flavor and a high smoke point, making it ideal for cooking.

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[Photo: courtesy Graza]

“Picual is an amazing variety,” says Benin, adding that picual oils are widely consumed locally in Spain, but only make it to the US as part of an oil blend. “I would say before our store it was really difficult to find 100% Picual [oil] in North America just because there is such massive demand for it domestically [in Spain] because they know what the heck the good stuff is.”

Benin came up with the idea of ​​making quality olive oil more accessible and appealing to Americans after spending time with his wife’s family in Spain. “Living in Spain for three years and watching my wife’s mother cook with olive oil so generously and without a doubt, I thought, ‘Holy Moly, what’s going on here?'”

Although he knows that Graza’s oils are not the cheapest on the market – the Variety Pack with Sizzle and Drizzle costs $35; individual bottles Start at $15 apiece — Benin didn’t want to resort to blending varieties to drive down the price. Instead, he focuses on the combination of value and quality. “It’s the same as real orange juice compared to orange juice made from concentrate,” he says, adding that his bottles — stamped with the olives’ harvest and packing dates — go a long way towards his secondary goal of getting people to buy the to use oil.

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[Photo: courtesy Graza]

“We didn’t start with a mission statement, but it’s ‘made to be used,'” he says. “[The packaging] helps in so many different ways because it’s like gentle behavior change,” he says. “People are just more likely to take it and use it.”

It helps that the olive oil is very good. When I first opened my bottle drizzle, I was impressed by its smell. Vegetarian and light, it stole the show in everything I’ve used it. It added body to vinaigrettes, jazzed up both frozen and fresh pizza, and enriched a baba ghanoush recipe I’ll never make with Wegmans stuff again. I’ve also started adding it to popcorn with some crushed pepper and parmesan for a cacio e pepe game.

sizzle was great for frying and more general purposes (the only thing I haven’t used it for is wok cooking at super high heat). While flavor isn’t the main attraction, I’ve noticed its presence when cooking eggs, and I’m not complaining. The squeeze bottle makes it easy to use.

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[Photo: courtesy Graza]

From what Benin says, I’m not the only one impressed by Graza. Since its inception in January, the company has generated approximately $500,000 in revenue. And while it started as a direct selling brand, Benin is aiming for a broader retail presence. About 50 boutiques already stock it — including Chicago-based Foxtrot, which also has stores in DC, Dallas, and Virginia. Benin says its brand could be available in 1,500 stores by the end of the year.

Graza has built its reputation without any formal advertising spend, Benin says, relying on word of mouth. He waits until he has more supply to really focus on marketing. “We were sold out left and right,” he says. “We were afraid that if we open the tap, we won’t be able to close it.”

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https://www.fastcompany.com/90740071/this-company-is-putting-its-world-class-olive-oils-in-sriracha-style-bottles?partner=feedburner&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=feedburner+fastcompany&utm_content=feedburner Graza’s premium olive oils are supplied in Sriracha style bottles

JACLYN DIAZ

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