SPOTLIGHT: His doctor suggested medication to fight high cholesterol, but Paul Karoyan found another way: “I took a shot of olive oil before bed for seven months straight.” It not only worked – it launched a worldwide journey that led to a line of custom olive oil featured at his Olive Branch & Grape Vine in Westwood.
( ABOVE PHOTO : Chuck Adams and Paul Karoyan talk with Mayor John Birkner Jr. STORY & PHOTOS by Lexy Siegel)
Westwood Mayor John Birkner Jr. and others joined Karoyan for the official ribbon-cutting Saturday afternoon at the Third Avenue shop.
All of the olive oil sold there is estate-grown in California, Italy or Spain. Unique vinegar flavors are offered, as well.
Karoyan, 38, also sells olive oil-based shampoos, soaps and lotions; natural wood kitchen supplies; recipe books incorporating different uses of olive oil; gourmet spice packs; spreads and different types of pastas. Customized gift baskets, gluten-free and kosher options are also available.
Karoyan features the spices of fellow Warwick resident Chuck Adams, who operates the Take Away Gourmet catering company. The spice labels provide recipes that include the specialized oils sold at Olive Branch.
Each has his favorite:
Karoyan suggested chipotle-infused olive oil from California: “Just sprinkle the olive oil on popcorn, even. Its great!”
Adams loves the espresso balsamic vinegar: “Don’t you just want to toss this on some arugula?”
Karoyan’s wife, Darina, offered her own choice: “Sometimes when I don’t know what I want to eat for dinner, I have a piece of bread and the habanero-infused olive oil and that’s it. Its absolutely delicious.”
Her husband chose Westwood for his first shop because of its bustling town center, which he called “natural and different.”
If the business thrives, Paul Karoyan said, “I’m thinking the next location would be either in Ridgewood or Wyckoff.”
Olive Branch & Grape Vine, with 25 different premium extra virgin olive oils and vinegar flavors, is located at 288 3rd Avenue, Westwood NJ. (201) 573-0220
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