For the 6th year in a row, the world guide to extra virgin olive oils Flos Olei 2021 declared Istria the best olive growing region in the world.
Istria surpassed 54 olive-growing countries, and Istrian olive growers found themselves in the company of the 500 best with a total share of as much as 14%. Since its first edition, in 2010, Istria has immediately taken an important role and positioned itself as the second best olive growing region, just behind Tuscany. The fact that Istria has 71 olive growers and Tuscany 43, this is the situation how it looks today. For the second time in a row, as many as three olive growers reached the grade of 98, and 13 Istrian olive growers were included in the extra class above 95 points.
Extra virgin olive oil, along with truffles, is one of the most competitive products in Istria. The culture of olive growing in Istria is extremely widespread, especially in catering, where an increasing number of restaurants are introducing a standard that serves at least one bottle of extra virgin olive oil in addition to specialties.
You can taste the famous Istrian oils on the many olive oil roads that are scattered around the peninsula. Take the path of marked trails and you will arrive right in front of the doors of oil mills and taverns where you can taste and buy this most famous Mediterranean elixir.
The basic mission and idea of the olive oil roads is to revitalize the most attractive resources, which is extra virgin olive oil, to enrich them and put them in the function of tourism development so that Istria imposes itself as a recognizable, competitive and quality lifestyle destination. Istria is the strongest destination in the world that has incorporated extra virgin olive oil into its tourist and lifestyle story, and is absolutely the only example in which Croatia is permanently the best in the world.
How to recognize top quality olive oil?
To learn how to recognize premium olive oil, first look at the label. The best oils are labeled "extra virgin" olive oil, and connoisseurs recognize them by their specific properties such as spiciness, bitterness and fruitiness. All parameters must be perfectly balanced, and such oils must not contain more than 0.8% of free fatty acids.