While on vacation in Spain, Frank and Marti Menacho received the kind of call business owners dread: Their building was on fire, their inventory up in flames.
On June 15, a fire destroyed the Olivias de Oro Olive Co. tasting room in Creston — and their entire stock of award-winning olive oil.
Now, a little more than a month later, the Menachos are beginning to rebuild. They’ll hold a fundraiser Saturday at the Olivas de Oro Olive Co. pressing room.
The Menachos founded Olivias de Oro Olive Co. in 1999, after buying a 160-acre olive orchard in Oroville.
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In 2007, the couple literally uprooted their company and moved 2,000 of their century-old trees to Creston. There, they opened an on-site pressing room, tasting room and guest house.
Guests staying in a house on the Creston property alerted the Menachos to the June 15 fire.
“They just started shouting, ‘The building is on fire! The building is on fire! The fire department is here,’ ” Marti Menacho recalled.
Four fire engines responded to the blaze and were able to keep the flames contained to the tasting room, according to Cal Fire.
The Menachos caught the next flight home and were at the tasting room a few days later to assess the damage.
“Seeing is a lot of different than having people relay (information) and pictures,” Menacho said.
According to Cal Fire spokesman Chris Elms, the cause of the fire is still unknown. Menacho said the investigation has concluded.
At this time, the Menachos do not know when they’ll reopen their tasting room.
However, the Menachos haven’t lost their optimism. They have faced many challenges over more than 30 years of marriage, Marti Menacho said, and the fire is just another bump in the road.
“Everybody faces stuff. You just can’t dwell on it,” she said.
Since the fire, the Menachos have received overwhelming community support, from local wineries to the 5,000-plus customers on their distribution list.
“I just want to thank everybody that everyone who has supported us through all of our business,” Marti Menacho said. “You really don’t know who your friends are until something like this happens, and it feels good when they show up.”
The Olivias de Oro Olive Co.’s mill and pressing facility were not affected by the fire, and the company will still be able to provide olive oil to their wholesale and private label customers. The business will begin harvesting olives for next year’s products in late October or early November, Menacho said.
However, in order to have olive oil for the remainder of the year, the Menachos had to buy back bottles from some of their customers and companies that they mill olives for.
On Saturday, the Olivias de Oro Olive Co. will host a Raise the Roof Party from 4 to 8 p.m. at its pressing facility, 4625 La Panza Road in Creston.
The event will feature a $15 barbecue dinner, live music, a silent auction and, of course, olive oil for sale.