Behind the Brand
Graza was founded by co-founders Andrew Benin and Allen Dushi. Andrew previously worked at direct-to-consumer startups like Warby Parker, Casper, and Magic Spoon, while Allen ran a nine-figure business in the apparel industry. Andrew always had an affection for olive oil due to the health benefits, delicious taste, and beautiful supply chain, and knew that he wanted to start an olive oil brand. After a trip to the Mediterranean, Andrew came back to New York with a suitcase full of high-quality and upscale olive oils. He hosted a tasting with his friend Michael Anthony, Executive Chef of Gramercy Tavern in NYC, who ultimately advised against starting a luxury olive oil brand due to market saturation. He told Andrew that there were enough boutique olive oil companies out there, causing Andrew to pivot from his original idea to focusing on a more mass-market (yet still premium) approach for a larger audience. With the help of a design agency, Andrew got to work on creating a brand identity that was lighter, sexier, and more fun — starting with Graza’s iconic chef-inspired squeeze bottles.
Prior to their direct-to-consumer launch, the Graza team purchased a bottle sealing machine from Alibaba, gathered friends in their Brooklyn office, and together packed about 800 bottles of olive oil to send out to content creators. They generated a lot of buzz and their hard work paid off; Graza sold out of product just one week after launch. Despite an explosive launch, demand for Graza’s olive oils has not slowed thanks to the company’s premium-quality products at accessible price points. Today, Graza continues to delight consumers with some of the freshest and best-tasting single-origin olive oils on the market.