Our dream was to see the abandoned olive grove passed down along four generations come back to life, to produce and taste the elixir of the eternal tree’s fruits. So we began to revive this land and produce the golden elixir, day by day and drop by drop, awakening our ancient heritage, and creating a gift to touch people all around the world.
The land is located in Amaliada, Peloponnese, and has been in the Spiliopoulou family since 1860, bearing grapes & olives until the late 1950s, then dormant until now. We knew that this land was precious, laden with pure gold, and wanted it to be shared worldwide.
We created Dia Elis in homage to the ancient civilization of the land where the trees grow. In Homer’s The Iliad, Rhapsody B, verse 615, he refers to the area of "Dia Elis" meaning "Divine Elis". Dia Elis is named after the land of Ancient Elis, in which Amaliada was found, reminding us that what we are tasting is indeed divine.
Ancient Elis was famous for its 700 years of harmonious governance and known for its dedication to Peace as a state. Archaeologists have found no traces of weapons there. They say the measure of civilization is how peaceful it was and also, how women were treated. Ancient Elis is exemplary in both.
Our logo is a woman, running towards her future because Ancient Elis was one of the only places in antiquity which held games for women to compete in. These were the Heraean Games in honor of the goddess Hera, while the Olympics were held in honor of Zeus in this same region.
Olive Oil in Antiquity
The olive tree has watched over humans since before we were born. The use of its juice has evolved from ointment for sacred rituals, and protection for athletes and sailors, to perfume for men and women. Today it has become the most reliable and healthiest fat known to the body. But this fruit juice has a history of its own.
There is an olive leaf fossil from the island of Evia from 23 million years ago and in Santorini, we have found fossils in volcanic craters dating as far back as 50,000 years.
Olea europaea as it is scientifically named, reached us via Syria and Palestine, through Crete during the Bronze Age.
The Athenian lawmaker Solon made olive oil the only agricultural export of that time and forbade the cutting down of trees, regulating the now-familiar formation of groves in rows instead of the formerly habitual random scattering. We see the creation of storage vases and the sharing of cultivation methods. In the 2nd century BC, records show custom duties, smuggling penalties, and stories of theft by pirates, indicating the value of olive oil in faraway seas and on distant shores. From there on, olive oil became a standard in our daily lives until today.
It is still a rare commodity outside of the Mediterranean and this is why we want Dia Elis to be our gift to the world. A precious gift that everybody deserves!