Clearly the better the olive the nicer your tapenade will be. Saying that though, even the cheap tinned olives come out nice when you give it the tapenade treatment. I use it as a spread for my crackers, or as a dip dressing with salads. It supports other flavors well given how strong the flavor is. I see it often used as a sauce for fish or meat, especially on Mediterranean influenced menus.
250g pitted black olives
Juice of half a large orange
30ml olive oil
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
Place of all the above ingredients into a blender and mix until smooth. You might need to add a splash of a little bit of water depending on the olive. Should be a nice smooth consistency, great served with crackers or as part of a mezze.