Choosing a great olive oil is easy, when they’re all great to begin with.

When it comes to choosing an olive oil on the Marketplace there are a lot of options. So how do you go about finding the best one for your needs?

Let’s start with one simple truth. Every olive oil offered for sale here is a winner at the New York International Olive Oil Competition, so your chances of buying a bad one are, well, zero. No matter which you choose, you will be enjoying one of the very best in the world, selected from nearly 1,000 contenders by the renowned NYIOOC judging panel.

Now that we got that out of the way, it’s a matter of finding those that suit your personal tastes.

Some people like to choose oils from a certain country for one reason or another: an Italian EVOO for Italian foods, or a Greek one for pouring over feta cheese and Greek salads. But a simpler way to find the right EVOO for the foods you’re preparing might be: How pronounced to you want the flavor of olives in your food?

Experts call the level of fruitiness in EVOOs intensity and oils in the Marketplace are categorized Delicate, Medium and Robust. Aficionados should have at least one of each in their pantry.

To illustrate how different olive oil intensities can affect foods, try a delicate oil on something like a boiled potato or a ripe tomato. There will be a hint of olive fruit flavor, while the taste of the food comes through in ways you never imagined. Then try the robust oil. You’ll still taste that delicious tomato loud and clear, but with a twist. A delightful, olive fruit twist.

Delicate oils are great for foods like broiled fish, tomato salads and steamed vegetables. Chefs choose more robust oils for grilled meats, stews and spicy dishes. Medium oils are great for their versatility and can go either way.

Then there is the whole world of olive varieties, or cultivars, which have their own unique taste characteristics. We will get into that in a later post.

Choosing an oil based on the types of foods you plan on using it for and the oil’s intensity will have great results. Using the Marketplace product finder lets you find the oils with just the right intensity for your needs.

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