My mother's family side is from Alexandria, Italy and since I am a kid I have in memory the smell and taste of olive oil but I have not been able to match that smell or taste in any brand I buy. Last week a relative broght me a bottle of "Olitalia Extra Vergine" from Italy but the same "No smell, no taste". I know why and you must know too.
There are several ways to find an oil which has a strong flavor. Avoid "Pure olive oil", it is another name for refined and will have no taste. "Extra Virgin olive oil" will have more taste. Most extra Virgin oil is blended and this makes it possible to achieve a consistent taste year after year but does not mean it will or will not have a strong flavor.
Fresher olive oil and oil made from certain olives will have a stronger taste. In California, oils made from Mission olives tend to be mild, which many people like. But if you are looking for a strong flavor look for oil made from Frantoio,leccino, or the other tuscan variety olives.
A stronger flavored oil will come from olives which are just barely ripe versus olives which have time to fully ripen. Look for a label that says "Early harvest".
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