The Coterie Olive harvest 2019

olive harvest at The Coterie

The crisp June morning on Sunday 16th started with a mild frost, but true to Marlborough’s repute, the sky was without a cloud and the sun warmed up the dew on the ground early in the morning.

30 friends and family members of The Coterie gathered, drinking hot coffee and tea, thawing out their fingers from 9am and by 9.30 they were harvesting their first olives.

A mix of utensils, from handheld rakes to a full generator and air compressor powered leaf shaker. The operation was underway!

Olives by the dozens, hundreds even, were falling to the ground, captured by large tarpaulins and small hands of children, transferring them to the large 500kg capacity picking bins.

There was respite at the end of the morning with hot date scones, with lashings of butter which had the troops going for another 2 hours until it was lunch time.

The grub has got to be good to encourage the voluntary labourers to return year after year.

A leg of marinated lamb on The Coterie’s famous Traegar Grill did the trick, though according to the pickers there definitely could have been more lamb to go around. Always a good sign having 30 empty plates at the end of the meal!

The crew picked one tonne of olives, resulting in 150 litres of oil for the pickers and guests to the Coterie. That should last us all a year… until the next harvest!