Olive oil is a versatile and popular household item. Used primarily for cooking, the quality, flavor and price point of a bottle can vary tremendously. Sourced worldwide, favorites hail from the Mediterranean (primarily Greece and Italy), the United States and Spain. The average consumer won't break the bank to buy a deluxe bottle of olive oil, but food enthusiasts and chefs might find it a great investment!
With prices ranging from $5-$185 per liter, there is an olive oil for every budget. You could even say that the market is saturated! Read on for some of the most deluxe options on the market today.
10 Lambda: Greece
Lambda is internationally recognized as the world's most expensive extra virgin olive oil. The oil hails from the village of Kritsa, Crete, where some of the oldest olive trees in Greece reside.
The high price point is due in part to its limited production; fine attention to the taste, quality and acidity mean a lower production rate. Still, the company bottles about 500,000 liters per year, and only sells around 1,000 liters. For $185 per liter, the demand is clearly lower than the supply, but marketing techniques are in play to raise sales. This is an olive oil that is a statement of prestige, class and excellence.
9 Manni: Italy
Manni Oil is a brand that prides itself on its ecologically friendly tapping and bottling methods. The Tuscan brand, founded by Armando Manni, is the only olive oil in the world to maintain its quality and freshness for over three years. The average for competitors is a few months. Furthermore, the oil boasts the highest level of antioxidants, making it the healthiest option on the market.
A favorite amongst chefs, Gordon Ramsay uses this olive oil in all of his restaurants. A box of 2 small 100ml bottles sells for about $50, with a minimum order of 5 boxes per transaction, on the Manni site.
8 Laudemio: Italy
The Laudemio Consortium is a prestigious, Tuscan producer of quality olive oils. The company brings together twenty-one independently owned olive estates, with a shared interest in producing the highest quality oils, from the region's best olives.
Founded just over 30 years ago, Laudemio has been referred to as 'the Ferrari of olive oils'. Tuscans take their olive oil seriously, and many would consider it an actual food group, not just an ingredient! A half-liter of Laudemio costs $38, and connoisseurs would argue that it is well worth the price. Drizzled over meats, fish or with fresh bread, this olive oil is fit for royalty.
7 Merula: Spain
Merula Extra Virgin Olive Oil is one of the most reputed Spanish oils. Named after the common blackbird (merula in Spanish) the oil is sold in an attractive and distinct tin can. The yellow-beaked bird populates the Alvarez de Toledo estate, where the olives hail from. In 2018, Merula took home the Silver prize at the New York International Olive Oil Convention.
The practical packaging makes this a great oil for gifting, and everyday use. A 500ml can sets you back $17, a very reasonable price for a product with such versatility and exceptional taste. A great pairing with cheese, bread or seafood dishes.
6 Henri Mor: Spain
Henri Mor is a Spanish oil business that has more recent roots. Started in 2016, the team, led by Henri Alegria, have quickly risen to international recognition. In a world that is increasingly concerned with the integrity of production, Henri Mor products boast a verified NON-GMO seal.
Within a year of hitting the market, Henri Mor oils were already collecting Gold medals at olive oil conferences, worldwide. A recommended taste for lovers of grilled vegetables, seafood and salad dressings. A 500ml bottle of this oil is sold for $25, and available to order on Amazon.
5 Olmais: Portugal
Quinta dos Olmais is a Portuguese olive oil company, named after the farm where the olives are cultivated. With a romantic forest and grove setting, the Gomes Alves family have used their farming expertise to perfect their product.
The result is an award-winning, organic extra virgin olive oil that has become a favorite of world-renowned chefs and food bloggers. Olmais has consistently been awarded for its great taste and quality. The company offers canned fish in oil, as well as standard bottles of olive oil. A half-liter costs $30 and can be purchased directly from the family, on their company website.
4 Colavita: Italy
Colavita is an oil company that started in the Molise region of Italy, in the late 1970's. Two families, both with the surname of Colavita, joined forces to create an oil empire, that would also distribute fine pastas, sauces and vinegars.
With production plants operating in Italy, California and New Jersey, the company is one of the most successful in the industry, with a reputation that is well deserved. Consistently praised for its great taste, versatility and quality, the $44 price per liter is well worth it. You can find their products on Amazon, or on their company website.
3 Saica Castelvetrano: Italy
Saica Castelvetrano is one of the most authentically produced olive oils in the world. The company uses the old-fashioned method of squeezing the olive to extract its juice. The result is a perfectly authentic and traditional flavor. The Sicilian based cooperative bottles only 17,000 liters per season, making it a sought after item.
Despite consistently being named as one of the best olive oils in the world, it is one of the most affordable on this list. At just under $20, you can secure a liter of this fantastic oil. Use it to make marinades and sauces, or just to dip bread in. Its great flavor will have you hooked.
2 Ellora Farms: Greece
Award-winning Ellora Farms olive oil is one of the most respected in the industry. Hailing from the middle of the Aegean Sea, between the Samaria Canyon and the Kolymvari Beach, the olive grove used to cultivate the oil is centuries old. The prime Mediterranean location has an ideal climate for harvesting only the highest quality olives.
In fact, Greek-derived olive oils have been credited as being some of the healthiest options on the market. Their most popular product, the Founders Reserve Extra Virgin Olive Oil has won 23 taste awards. It sells for $30 per half-liter and can be ordered on the company's website, or on Amazon.
1 E-La-Won: Greece
E-La-Won is a newcomer on the luxury olive oil scene, but has quickly made a name for itself! The Greek company has already racked up several prestigious awards for the integrity of their products, which include oils, honeys and pestos.
The marketing of the product is partly responsible for its appeal to consumers. The name E-La-Won derives from the ancient Mycenae Linear B symbols, where E-La-Won represented 'olive oil'. Their limited edition Luxury olive oil contains actual gold flakes and was sent to Bill Gates as a present. Now, that's pretty fancy. A bottle of their standard olive oil sells for $20 a half liter.