Meet the Woman Bringing Calabrian Olive Oil to the U.S.

Sep 21, 2020 206

Before meeting her husband Giuseppe Morisania in Italy, Skyler Mapes used to buy whatever brand of olive oil was on sale at her local big box store. But when Morisania—whose family has pressed olive oil from their olive trees for three generations—expressed his horror at her choice of bland, flavorless oil during a visit to the Bay Area in 2015, she realized she needed to develop a palate.

“I didn’t know that olive oil was just as complex as wine,” says Mapes, whose parents often took her to northern California wineries growing up. “And that there were so many different varietals.” Mapes has come a long way since discount olive oil. Together with Morisania, she founded olive oil company EXAU, named after the phrase “oleum ex albis ulivis,” used by ancient Romans to describe the best type of olive oil. 

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