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Home Europe Life´s short, Eat Sturgeon Caviar! Fishy Business for Hot Party

Life´s short, Eat Sturgeon Caviar! Fishy Business for Hot Party

Wit is like caviar – it should be served in small portions and not spread about like marmalade

FISHY CAVIAR BUSINESS: This stuff is expensive; A pound of the best caviar – or 0,45 kilo – can easily cost more than a midsize car. Restaurants can charge 200 dollar or more for a single serving. We talk about the most heavenly starter – an ode to the holy trinity: Potato, sour cream and sturgeon caviar. The rösti crisp outside and soft in the centre, while the silky, tangy sour cream and luxuriously salty caviar help it slip down a treat. A majority mean it´s best paired with Champagne, even if you prefer just the caviar and skip potato and sour cream.

Black caviar on toast
Black caviar on toast

Screenwriter William A. Drake: “Have caviar if you like, but it tastes like herring for me”

Direct from a Can

Caviar is an elegant delicacy; any occasion will be extra special with caviar on the table. Some prefer caviar on its own without any extra at all, serve as it is from the can placed on top of a bowl of crushed ice. Serving the caviar directly from the can, you will avoid breaking the eggs.

The caviar taste

The flavour will depend on its quality, but have a mild fishiness and slight saltiness – or simply taste like ocean water. Good caviar is mild and fresh, with no intensity, rather an unexpected buttery richness.
Caviar is actually most dominant in private gatherings, in private clubs and on special occasions where the rich meet. Like my experience in New York, not as an invited guest but rather onlooker to a special gathering.

Said by Arsene Wenger: “If you eat caviar every day it´s difficult to return to sausages”

There in a circle, eight men standing and scooping a small spoon into the open pot. To my surprise pouring the contents onto their clenched fists, and sucking it. It may seem like “Bumps” of caviar are to parties today what chocolate fountain was in the Nineties.

Licking Fish Roe

This is a trend at a certain type of party, or glitzy events in London as well, and certainly on Instagram. However, one question needs to be asked: “Why are some diners licking fish roe from their fists?”

Asking Ben Tish at Salt Yard in London. “I think it is a bit ridiculous, to be honest. The point is, you want to keep the egg whole and messing about putting them on your hand – well, you are in danger of breaking up the eggs”

This is the spoon you should use when eating caviar
This is the spoon you should use when eating caviar

Mother of Pearl Spoon

Rule number one: Don´t eat caviar with a metal spoon, because it may oxidize when exposed to metals like silver. It could lose its flavour.
Use the mother of pearl spoon for serving and eating, made by natural materials. They do not tarnish the delicate flavour of the sturgeon eggs. The spoons are hand-made from pearl shells found off the coast of Vietnam, and does not hold flavour.

Close up: Caviar and the spoon
Close up: Caviar and the spoon

Sturgeon caviar

Most caviar comes from sturgeon, a fish raised for 10 years or more before it is killed to take its roe. Sturgeon can live to be up to 100 years old, and the largest on record was a beluga female captured in Volga Delta in 1827 – 7,2 meter long and 1,571 kilos.

Since the 90s, sturgeon is mostly farmed to produce caviar using aquaculture several places in the world. The largest wild sturgeon can take 25years to start producing eggs.

How to eat Caviar

For first timers, a small scoop of caviar without any addition will help to get familiar with the taste. Later on, you may find the best combination for you, such as unsalted crackers and hard-boiled egg. Or buttered toast with crème fraiche toppings, and steamed baby potatoes.

This is a proper way to eat sturgeon caviar
This is a proper way to eat sturgeon caviar

The Russian way is to serve with blinis, to spread caviar across and then top it with sour cream. To complete this tradition, you may include a small glass with cold vodka – and prepare you for the next bite.

Mark Kurlansky: “In 19th century Russia, sauerkraut was valued more than caviar”

The Russian style: Sturgeon Caviar and vodka
The Russian style: Sturgeon Caviar and vodka

The Caviar Company

Petrossian is the world´s most famous caviar company, with flagship store at 13 Boulevard de la Tour-Maubourg in Paris. Also boutique in Belgium, Switzerland, Italy, Germany and the US. The company was established in 1920.

“When I think of caviar, I immediately think of Petrossian”, says Molly Baz, food editor at Bon Appetit.

Alex and Armen Petrossian in Paris
Alex and Armen Petrossian in Paris

The American journalist Irving Kristol: “One can be unhappy before eating caviar, even after, but at least not during”.

Why caviar is so expensive

Caviar at restaurants rarely costs less than 100 usd, some charges nearly 400 for 50 grams.
There are few things you should know without going totally broke. Expensive doesn´t necessarily mean better, it´s about finding what you like. Tell the waiter whether you prefer something buttery, nutty, or briny or salted.

Let´s be frank, restaurants don´t do much to improve caviar. They buy it, open up the tin, add spoon alongside some blini and crème fraiche. That means, you can buy the same product from Petrossian and save money when serve in private.

But sometimes it’s nice to celebrate with a night out. Then small, black pearls melting in the mouth are the ultimate alternative. Expensive, yes, but this is a taste that is unlike anything else on offer. Above and beyond, our precious advice is at least for free, if you don´t mind!

Noel Coward: “Wit is like caviar – it should be served in small portions and not spread about like marmalade”

One of many questions: What does caviar test like?
One of many questions: What does caviar test like?

Do you still have questions about Caviar..?

Q: What s Sturgeon caviar?
A: Only sturgeon eggs qualify as caviar! Roe is a general word that means fish eggs, but roe and caviar are definitely not compatible.

Q: What does caviar taste like?
A: Caviar will always have mild fishiness and slight saltiness, with a buttery richness.

Q: Where can I buy white Sturgeon caviar?
A: Best advice, buy it online. The Italian white Sturgeon caviar has smooth and creamy textures. Price for 20g: £ 26

Q: What Sturgeon produce caviar?
A: Traditional from wild sturgeon raised in the Caspian Sea and the Black Sea harvested from beluga, osetra, and sevruga sturgeon.

Q: How much Caviar per Sturgeon?
A: Between 5 kg and 20 kg of caviar are extracted per female. Smaller sturgeon, such as the osetra or sevruga, produce less.

Q: Why is Sturgeon caviar so expensive?
A: The shortage of sturgeon combined with the desirability of caviar as well as the extensive breeding and harvesting process is what makes it so expensive.

Q: How much does Sturgeon caviar cost?
A: Retail price won’t be less than $65 to $85 per 30 grams. Really good stuff starting at around $150 or more. In a restaurant, Caviar service rarely costs less than $100.

Q: Where to buy Russian Osetra caviar?
A: The price for 1oz Russian Osetra Karat black caviar costs $57.00 from one serious provider online. Osetra is one of the finest caviar available.

 

Gudmund Lindbaek
Gudmund Lindbaek
Journalist founded King Goya a few years back. Meeting people, local food and engaging stories are my passion. I plan for ambitious once-in-a-lifetime trips. My delight is the prospect of Future Travels: Longer, Slower, Farther! I just want a tiny slice of adventure to be alive, and then excited to return home.

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