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Best Olive Oils for 2018 Revealed

The winners of the NYIOOC World Olive Oil Competition were unveiled at a press conference in New York tonight.

Gold Award winner Daniel Santini (photo NYIOOC)
Apr. 26, 2018
By Hannah Howard
Gold Award winner Daniel Santini (photo NYIOOC)

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The results of the world’s largest olive oil com­pe­ti­tion were announced by Cur­tis Cord, the Olive Oil Times pub­lisher and NYIOOC pres­i­dent before a packed room of 200 jour­nal­ists, olive oil pro­duc­ers and food indus­try pro­fes­sion­als, and an esti­mated 7,500 who watched the live stream of the event.

Pro­duc­ers ner­vously waited to dis­cover the results. This was a tough year,” said Mili Kus, who won a Sil­ver for her Croa­t­ion organic Oliva Lucia extra vir­gin olive oil in last year’s com­pe­ti­tion. There was a severe drought. The trees weath­ered it well, but the fla­vor of our oil was really dif­fer­ent from what we were expect­ing.”

Cord began his announce­ment by cred­it­ing atten­dees for their part in bring­ing about what he called a mod­ern under­stand­ing of the value of high-qual­ity olive oil,” and for help­ing to pro­vide us with the health­ier, bet­ter prod­ucts we need.”
See more: The Best Olive Oils for 2018

Before Cord began call­ing pro­duc­ers on stage to receive their award, he reminded the audi­ence of the dif­fi­cul­ties pro­duc­ers face in pur­suit of their craft: We are not here only to cel­e­brate the win­ners of this com­pe­ti­tion, but to applaud, rec­og­nize, and express our grat­i­tude to every olive oil pro­ducer com­mit­ted to mak­ing the best prod­uct they can.”

Karim Fitouri won two Gold Awards for his Olvko brand (Photo: NYIOOC)

One thou­sand entries were eval­u­ated by a panel of 18 expert judges from 13 coun­tries dur­ing the week, until just hours before the press con­fer­ence. NYIOOC orga­niz­ers closed reg­is­tra­tion in early March after an unprece­dented 1,000 entries from 27 coun­tries were reg­is­tered.

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The NYIOOC World Olive Oil Com­pe­ti­tion is the largest olive oil qual­ity con­test and its annual list­ing of award win­ners is widely con­sid­ered the most trusted guide to the year’s best extra vir­gin olive oils. The com­plete list of award win­ners is pre­sented on the Offi­cial Index of the World’s Best Olive Oils.

Pro­duc­ers from Italy sub­mit­ted the most entries with 253, fol­lowed by Greece with 152, Spain with 151, the United States with 132, Por­tu­gal with 67, Croa­tia with 45, Tunisia with 38, Aus­tralia with 28, Turkey with 27, Brazil (13) and France (12). There were entries from Chile, Lebanon, China, South Africa, New Zealand, Mex­ico, Slove­nia, Japan, Egypt, Uruguay, Israel, Morocco, Alba­nia, Bosnia and Herze­gov­ina, Alge­ria and Argentina.

More brands from more coun­tries than ever before par­tic­i­pated in the NYIOOC. The sharp upward trend in qual­ity from pre­vi­ous years is con­tin­u­ing,” Cord remarked. Pro­duc­ers cheered and smiled as they ascended the stage to receive their hard-earned awards.

Pro­duc­ers from 22 coun­tries received awards — two more than last year. 53 per­cent of the entrants won over­all, includ­ing 152 Ital­ian olive oils, 93 Span­ish oils, and 73 oils from the US. One-third of Greek sub­mis­sions took home awards, and 40 out of 45 Croa­t­ian olive oils won. 11 Tunisian olive oils and 12 Turk­ish oils gar­nered awards. More than half of Portugal’s entries suc­ceeded in the com­pe­ti­tion.

Sarah Rocaboy represented Olivier & Company, winner of 3 Gold Awards

Euse­bio Gar­cia de la Cruz Pascual’s fam­ily has been craft­ing olive oil for five gen­er­a­tions. Their Amphora extra vir­gin olive oil, a hand­crafted blend to cel­e­brate 145 years of mak­ing oil in El Cer­rillo,” Spain, was awarded Gold. It’s a fusion of tra­di­tion and inno­va­tion,” Pas­cual remarked about his organic olive oil.

Richard Meisler, who owns San Miguel Olive Farm in California’s Cen­tral Coast, beamed as he held his sleek tro­phy. Pro­duc­ing olive oil is hard work,” he said. And this helps remind us why it’s worth it.” San Miguel’s Tus­can Gold Nec­tar and Tus­can Gold Supremo both received Gold.

Kus was relieved and thrilled; Oliva Lucia won a Gold award after all. I’m sur­prised,” she said. Now it’s time to cel­e­brate.”

The com­plete results are pre­sented on the offi­cial NYIOOC results web­site, bestoliveoils.com.


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