Olive woodOne of my assignments while in the AF was to Iraklion Air Base, Crete Greece.
Pretty much all of the wood used there was olive wood - heating homes, home grilling and for restruants. One of our favorite eating places was affectionately called Chicken George's by the americans.
George specialized in "smashed chicken" grilled over olive wood charcoal - as far as I could tell, he cooked his own charcoal that he then used to grill the chicken. This was probably the best grilled chicken I've ever had.
The character of olive wood smoke is unique, and very flavorful, probably closest the closest american wood would be mesquite in my view. The wood burns incredibly hot as it's fairly dense and seems to carry a lot of BTUs.
Not sure how russian olive would compare, if you give it a go, let us know!