The Gettysburg Olive Oil Company, located at 430 Baltimore St., Gettysburg, has opened its doors to the public, offering a unique reflection of both Italian tradition and Gettysburg culture. Over Labor Day weekend, the shop found itself packed to the brim with both locals and tourists, coming not just to buy, but to partake in an experience.
Store manager Hayley Murphy said the best quality of the store is the experience people have when they enter. Visitors are not greeted by rows and rows of olive oil, but rather by an open atmosphere and a table set with vinegars and oils to sample. Savoring the plethora of choices, people can sample the wide variety the store has to offer.
Murphy said tasting the different products allows the person to engage with what makes each one unique and what each one has to offer to create a fine meal. “It’s also a learning experience, in which customers learn new recipes and ways in which both vinegar and olive oils can be prepared and served,” she said.
The vinegars and olive oils, which originate in Tunisia and Italy, have a variety of uses, from an olive oil that can be paired with bread to a vinegar that can be used with ice cream for a dessert
Accompanying the oils and vinegars are a selection of barbecue and hot sauces created from vinegar and, as the bottles read, are “a true reflection of the labors and passions of individual producers and farmers from Italy and Tunisia.” They come with multiple flavorings and levels of heat.
The shop also offers a selection of traditional handcrafted Italian pottery. From spoon rests to oil dispensers, these are painted with a fine brushstroke to create an elegant and colorful pattern that is traditional of the culture.
Paired with this foreign influence are contributions from local artisans, including coasters and cutting boards. Murphy said the store brings foreign goods and traditions to emphasize how, when paired with the Gettysburg culture, they can create something truly unique that reflects the best qualities of both.
Murphy said the multiple cultures are displayed on the shop’s sign, which “is both modern and historical, designed and created by a local craftsperson.”
The shop also focuses on the health benefits of olive oil. Murphy said olive oil helps as an anti-inflammatory, protecting against diabetes and reducing blood pressure. Also offered are olive-oil soaps, which are said to possess health benefits, including boosting hair and skin health, and providing benefits for aging.