Olive oil tasting that is held at home in Brist by the family of Joško Veža is a real tourist attraction, especially for the guests of Western Europe. No wonder that is the case because this is the only place of this kind in the whole Makarska Riviera and beyond. Hoteliers of southern part of the Makarska Riviera are well aware of it, that is why they regularly bring their guests here, especially in the pre and postseason. Another interesting fact is that the family has organized a course, conveniently called a School for Olive- growing.
Spouses Sonja Josko Veža have opened the first olive oil tasting place in Makarska Riviera few years ago. It is placed in Brist in an attractive beach house in an old grandparent’s house in Blatnice. There is held a true olive growing course. They are the owners of the family farm – OPG Franka. Joško Veža had decided to open a school here, where you can learn all about the olives. In this charming 300- year- old place the visitors (more than 150 of them per season) experience for themselves where the oil is stored and in what it is preserved. They taste this lovely oil that became famous even beyond our country. People come here individually, but there are also groups that are organized by the hotels in Gradac. It’s a petty that not all of the hotels in Makarska follow this example and that they still didn’t recognize the opportunity to complement the quality of their offerings.
Joško Veža finished School of Agriculture and he worked as a florist in hotels in Zagreb and hotels in Gradac, but finally he switched to olive oil. In the year 2002 he won his first Paquette for the most exemplary olive grower, the same happened in 2003, and then 2004 he went to the first olive oil competition and won a bronze medal. In 2006 he was already a vice- champion for the quality of his oil.
At the international manifestation of olives in 2010, we won the first place between eight counties that were competing.
Joško Veža says that in 2013 he won the greatest achievement for him, because it was given to him from his colleagues. And that is the Charter ‘Josko Niskota’. Also in 2013 he was a champion in the packaging category ( actually the quality and the packaging of the oil).
In 2013 Joško Veža was declared as the most exemplary olive grower in this area. Brist has a great tradition of olive growing. Brist had his oil mill way back in 1911.
Joško’s wife Sonja is always here for her husband, so she is equally responsible for all of the prizes and awards. These hard working olive growers have four children. The oldest daughter is named after her grandmother, Franka , and that is also the name of the house where the family has a pension and ten suites. Also, the oil is named ‘Franka’.
And Franka and the other daughters – Marta , Margarita, and son Michael are now all in school, so that one day they could continue the family business.
This first olive oil tasting place opened in 2004 has altogether 6 different varieties of olive oil . There are three one sort oils and three of mixed sorts. For the presentation they usually offer these three oils. What is tried here, and must be what visitors get in the bottles the buy
Hotels in Gradac that have recognized this place found out that it is also a great way to extend their season. Brist is still not so well known and there is a lack of publicity, so hotels in Makarska are yet to discover the greatness of this place.
Oils from Brist are known in the market outside Croatia
Family Veža has three hundred olive trees and last fall they had two tons of oil and 13 tons of olives. The quality of oil is best explained by the fact that every year when the Croatian oil goes into the world, Croatian Chamber of Economy organizes a presentation of the oils from Brist.