Decide What to Buy. Start with a general idea of what you want to buy. Do you need truffle oil for a recipe or a sheep cheese for tonight's party? Gourmet shops are full of wonderful items. It's tempting to buy some delicious sounding Asian sauce or pickled mushrooms. More often than not, though, if you don't know what to use them for, that bottle is going to end up in the pantry for the next six months and eventually the garbage. Money wasted.
Do Some Research. If you need truffle oil, there may be only one or two brands available at the store. If you're looking for olive oil, however, there may be dozens of brands. Choosing just one can be nerve wracking. Lucky for us, someone has probably tasted most of those brands and posted their thoughts on the Internet. Find a reputable web site (this one is a good place to start) and use their recommendations as a guide. Remember, though, everyone has different tastes and what you like may be different from the writer. If several different people are recommending the same product, it's probably a safe choice as far as quality is concerned.