Award-winning olive oil producer Olive Black is elated New Zealand olive oils are being noticed globally, as the company wins gold at the New York International Olive Competition.
Hot on the heels of winning Best in Show at the New Zealand Olive Oil Awards 2020, for its extra virgin olive oil, Wairarapa olive grower, Olive Black, now also has a gold medal from one of the most prestigious competitions in the world.
This year, there was a record 1100 entries from 28 countries in the New York competition and Olive Black manager Mark Bunny says he is absolutely fizzing.
“It’s putting New Zealand olive oils on the world stage. Because we’re very young producers compared with countries like Spain, Italy, France and Greece, which have been doing it for thousands of years, it’s absolutely wonderful. I hope it leads to greater recognition of New Zealand olive oils.”
He says a lot of hard work has gone into producing Olive Black oil and there has been a lot of learning along the way. He says a good olive oil is a bit like a good wine.
“You don’t want a bland olive oil. It has to have body and substance but also needs to be balanced, you don’t want it to be too far in one extreme. It’s like a meal, it’s got to have body and substance that you can taste.”
Mr Bunny says judges have described Olive Black oil as having hints of green grass, pine, floral tones and say it is an harmonious oil.
He says the Wairarapa climate has a lot to do with Olive Black’s success.
“I personally believe it’s the difference in temperature from heat to coldness and I also think that in the summer, a little bit of stress from the lack of moisture seems to bring out some flavours.”
Mr Bunny says he’s looking forward to the harvest next week and the latest olives going to the olive press in Greytown – making more award-winning oil.