Caviar

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Andrew Gold
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Caviar

#1 Post by Andrew Gold » November 28th, 2012, 11:46 am

Alright, so I know nothing here...

My wife wants some caviar to eat over the general mirth period coming at us. Again, I know nothing really at all...

I see us buying and eating the stuff only very rarely moving forward, so don't want to bother with cheap and or crappy options, but don't also feel the need to jump straight to the insanely priced options either. Can anyone point me in the direction of where or what I should be looking for? Should I even bother looking local (ie Portland) or simply suck it up and go online and deal with shipping?

I realize this is an incredibly open ended question, but any help or thoughts would really be appreciated.

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Ron Kramer
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Re: Caviar

#2 Post by Ron Kramer » November 28th, 2012, 11:48 am

Go look at Zabars

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Re: Caviar

#3 Post by Dick Krueger » November 28th, 2012, 11:57 am

Since you live in Portland OR, I'd suggest ordering from Catalina Offshore Products in San Diego. Their address and phone numbers are: 5202 Lovelock St. San Diego, CA 92110
Phone: (619) 297-9797 - Fax: (619) 297-9799.
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Re: Caviar

#4 Post by Joe B » November 28th, 2012, 12:01 pm

J W@ll @ce

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Re: Caviar

#5 Post by gene keenan » November 28th, 2012, 1:19 pm

Catalina is a great place (I use them) and would use them for salmon, tobiko and other goodies but if you are looking for sturgeon i would suggest this place:
http://www.tsarnicoulai.com
or one of the many places that sell their product. It's sustainably farmed. There are other American Caviars you could check out too.

I'd stay away from Caspian caviar because of the impending doom facing the species there.

Happy hunting.
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Re: Caviar

#6 Post by George Hejna » November 28th, 2012, 1:24 pm

Beluga is illegal in the U.S now so any of that you see is either black market of questionable origin. I would looked for farmed Osetra from Israel or somewhere else in the mideast. To me they are the best due to their size and firmness of the egg. I hate mushy caviar. There are many sources and you will probably pay around $100/oz. In Israel there is some sustainable caviar production. There are some good domestic sources also for less money but I am less familiar with those so hesitate to recommend one. I am sure others will chime in.

I think how you serve the roe is also key. I like mine very, very plain usually just the caviar maybe a blini a little egg yolk but tend to stay away from the cremes and onions anything with a very strong flavor. Do not use a metal spoon.

George

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Re: Caviar

#7 Post by gene keenan » November 28th, 2012, 1:28 pm

George Hejna wrote:Beluga is illegal in the U.S now so any of that you see is either black market of questionable origin. I would looked for farmed Osetra from Israel or somewhere else in the mideast. To me they are the best due to their size and firmness of the egg. I hate mushy caviar. There are many sources and you will probably pay around $100/oz. In Israel there is some sustainable caviar production. There are some good domestic sources also for less money but I am less familiar with those so hesitate to recommend one. I am sure others will chime in.

I think how you serve the roe is also key. I like mine very, very plain usually just the caviar maybe a blini a little egg yolk but tend to stay away from the cremes and onions anything with a very strong flavor. Do not use a metal spoon.

George
I had mushy caviar at La Folie a few weeks ago. Awful but then again at $110/oz in a restaurant i was not expecting to be great. Although I did expect it to be better than it was.
Jerry loved well aged BV Private Reserve Georges De Latour

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Re: Caviar

#8 Post by Paul Bacino » November 28th, 2012, 1:41 pm

"Make someone's holiday briny and bright!" Sterling White Sturgeon Caviar. Part of #thefrenchlaundry exclusive limited-edition Schramsberg Sparkling and Caviar Experience available December 1st at finessemagazine.com/gifts http://instagr.am/p/SlO_pnrH6e/

But appears Keller is using it!!

I have never had Sterlings Product.

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Re: Caviar

#9 Post by David K o l i n » November 28th, 2012, 2:39 pm

Paul Bacino wrote:"Make someone's holiday briny and bright!" Sterling White Sturgeon Caviar. Part of #thefrenchlaundry exclusive limited-edition Schramsberg Sparkling and Caviar Experience available December 1st at finessemagazine.com/gifts http://instagr.am/p/SlO_pnrH6e/

But appears Keller is using it!!

I have never had Sterlings Product.
http://www.sterlingcaviar.com/SterlingC ... hefarm.asp

And free shipping if you order 60 grams or more!

Or you can walk on the edge and get snail eggs ("escargot caviar")

http://www.beverlyhillscaviar.com/escar ... 16633.html

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Re: Caviar

#10 Post by benjamin laird marshall » November 28th, 2012, 2:43 pm

Browne trading Co. Supplies Daniel Boulud and many of the best east coast restaurants with super promo fish. They do very nice caviar.
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Re: Caviar

#11 Post by Chris Blum » November 28th, 2012, 3:48 pm

I've ordered from caviarstar.com with no problems. For a party, I like to do three and compare; Osetra, good domestic paddlefish/sturgeon, and some salmon roe. Good variety of flavors, great looking color contrast.

You can make blini if you are feeling ambitious.
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Re: Caviar

#12 Post by Michael Bowden » November 28th, 2012, 5:41 pm

Chris Blum wrote:I've ordered from caviarstar.com with no problems.

Ordered from them maybe 1/2 dozen times...no problems ever.
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Re: Caviar

#13 Post by Frank Deis » November 28th, 2012, 8:27 pm

The American stuff can be surprisingly good. And Paddlefish etc., also better than one would expect.

I love caviar but have not thought about it for a long time. Now I want some...
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Re: Caviar

#14 Post by Barry L i p t o n » November 28th, 2012, 9:59 pm

How is the stuff from Russ and Daughters?

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Re: Caviar

#15 Post by Russell Faulkner » November 28th, 2012, 10:13 pm

The problem is that you need a lot. Guy Savoy does a sublime dish with an enormous sized portion of the good stuff.

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Re: Caviar

#16 Post by Larry P » November 29th, 2012, 12:00 pm

My wife has been expressing a curiosity about trying caviar so I've bookmarked most of the links in this thread.

What about serviing suggestions/recipes?

Outside-the-box wine pairings?
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Re: Caviar

#17 Post by Dan.Gord0n » November 29th, 2012, 12:58 pm

Frank Deis wrote:The American stuff can be surprisingly good. And Paddlefish etc., also better than one would expect.

I love caviar but have not thought about it for a long time. Now I want some...
I was looking at one of the websites the other day and it seemed that going with Paddlefish might strike a balance between price and quality - something that isn't just tiny quantities on a special occasion. While probably clearly not as good as the real thing, how is the Paddlefish in your opinion? Enjoyable and close enough to the real thing that it is worth the trade-off for being afforable?

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Re: Caviar

#18 Post by Chris Blum » November 29th, 2012, 1:01 pm

Best served by itself on a blini if you ask me. Some folks like a little creme fraiche or sour cream, and some try to cover up the taste even more by adding bermuda onion or hard boiled egg.

Another good simple service is to roast some halved baby Yukon or other baby potatoes and use them in place of the blini. It adds a bit of sweet that I like sometimes.

Toast points are also popular and much cheaper than buying blini. Here is a blini recipe if you are feeling semi-ambitious...
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/buckwheat-blinis/
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Re: Caviar

#19 Post by Chris Blum » November 29th, 2012, 1:09 pm

Dan.Gord0n wrote:
Frank Deis wrote:The American stuff can be surprisingly good. And Paddlefish etc., also better than one would expect.

I love caviar but have not thought about it for a long time. Now I want some...
I was looking at one of the websites the other day and it seemed that going with Paddlefish might strike a balance between price and quality - something that isn't just tiny quantities on a special occasion. While probably clearly not as good as the real thing, how is the Paddlefish in your opinion? Enjoyable and close enough to the real thing that it is worth the trade-off for being afforable?
Sometimes good, sometimes muddy flavors, especially if served too warm. I prefer sturgeon, but everything is personal opinion. Some folks like good salmon roe better than beluga or osetra Again, my advice is to buy an ounce of three different ones and see which you like best. Then go to another source and do the same.
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Re: Caviar

#20 Post by Frank Deis » November 29th, 2012, 1:19 pm

Agree with Chris, paddlefish can be good -- I haven't noticed a muddy flavor tho.

Salmon roe always strikes me as not in the same category at all as sturgeon caviar.

Best caviar I ever had was Iranian. Probably quite impossible to obtain these days.
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Re: Caviar

#21 Post by Dan.Gord0n » November 29th, 2012, 2:49 pm

Thanks for the comments - maybe I'll just give it a try - price of entry at most places isn't all that high.

Best caviar I've ever had the fortune to have had a number of times (though not since the late-80s/90s) was Petrossian Beluga - was lucky enough many, many years ago to help a friend finish up by the spoonful a kilo tin which had been given to his father by a client (I think it was the second of 2 tins and so they were sick of it by the time that I stopped by - crazy - I'm just happy enough when clients pay my bills).

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Re: Caviar

#22 Post by Larry P » November 29th, 2012, 5:43 pm

Frank Deis wrote:Best caviar I ever had was Iranian. Probably quite impossible to obtain these days.
I was wondering something as I read up on the websites above - a lot of the "imported" caviar seems to come from farms in Isreal, Bulgaria, or Germany. If it's not coming from cold Russian waters, is there really any difference between these and a domestic farmed caviar? Why not just buy from these guys in Sacramento?
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Re: Caviar

#23 Post by Ron Kramer » November 29th, 2012, 6:14 pm

Dan.Gord0n wrote:Thanks for the comments - maybe I'll just give it a try - price of entry at most places isn't all that high.

Best caviar I've ever had the fortune to have had a number of times (though not since the late-80s/90s) was Petrossian Beluga - was lucky enough many, many years ago to help a friend finish up by the spoonful a kilo tin which had been given to his father by a client (I think it was the second of 2 tins and so they were sick of it by the time that I stopped by - crazy - I'm just happy enough when clients pay my bills).
When I was a honcho my Christmas gift to myself was always 1/2Kg of Petrossian Beluga and when available Imperial. I,like you pretty much would eat it with a bone spoon sometimes with Champagne but mostly with some viscous good vodka from the freezer. Shirley didn't care for it and I didn't encourage her to keep trying.

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Re: Caviar

#24 Post by Nolan E » November 29th, 2012, 7:51 pm

I don't have experience with top tier caviar, but the good stuff I've had is best on its own, no blini or anything.

You guys have me thinking about my New Year's Day lunch earlier than normal. I'll have to see what we have in our caviar cooler at the store tomorrow.
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Re: Caviar

#25 Post by Frank Deis » November 29th, 2012, 9:42 pm

Nolan E wrote:I don't have experience with top tier caviar, but the good stuff I've had is best on its own, no blini or anything.

You guys have me thinking about my New Year's Day lunch earlier than normal. I'll have to see what we have in our caviar cooler at the store tomorrow.
The Iranian stuff was like that -- you could take your mother of pearl spoon and just gobble a couple of ounces of the stuff. Not fishy, not salty, not black -- beautiful little grey pearls that were delicious and had a taste of the sea. Fresh, lovely texture, not gluey.

That was a peak experience -- but I think I even kind of like mediocre caviar, given the blini and sour cream treatment. If it's black salty and gluey, what the hell, it's better than no caviar at all... Chop some onions and hard boiled egg, load up with creme fraiche, it's all good.

Just need a glass of decent Champagne to wash it down.
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Re: Caviar

#26 Post by G. Bienstock » November 30th, 2012, 7:03 am

I ordered a double Ikura, salmon roe, at the sushi bar as my usual starter this week. The couple next to us at the sushi bar made yucky faces when they saw me tear into the roe. I love the stuff.

It sounds like trying some paddlefish roe may be in order.
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Re: Caviar

#27 Post by Jay Carroll » November 30th, 2012, 7:23 am

One of my favorite memories is Beluga(before the ban) with a 82 DomP....god it was good!!

Is the imported stuff good anymore??

Also cannot stand salmon eggs...blech.
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Re: Caviar

#28 Post by Robert Pollard-Smith » November 30th, 2012, 9:47 am

G. Bienstock wrote:I ordered a double Ikura, salmon roe, at the sushi bar as my usual starter this week. The couple next to us at the sushi bar made yucky faces when they saw me tear into the roe. I love the stuff.

It sounds like trying some paddlefish roe may be in order.
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Re: Caviar

#29 Post by brianmcbrearty » November 30th, 2012, 10:07 am

Frank Deis wrote:The American stuff can be surprisingly good. And Paddlefish etc., also better than one would expect.

I love caviar but have not thought about it for a long time. Now I want some...
Likewise because the price went mad, it seems, since about ten years ago when I was grabbing a jar at Zabars every week. I got this cool non reactive spoon made of some endangered species or other sitting around doing nothing.

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Re: Caviar

#30 Post by scamhi » November 30th, 2012, 10:35 am

Barry L i p t o n wrote:How is the stuff from Russ and Daughters?
eggscellent
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Re: Caviar

#31 Post by jordan whitehead » November 30th, 2012, 11:19 am

http://www.kelleyskatch.com/

for american paddlefish

next day shipping is a flat costly fee but if you can order with friends not too bad
www.annaswish.org

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Re: Caviar

#32 Post by ryancurry » November 30th, 2012, 5:28 pm

Petrossian is very good. Caviar Russe is my favorite. Neither are cheap.
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Re: Caviar

#33 Post by Frank Deis » December 1st, 2012, 6:15 am

An easy solution, if you are in a swanky neighborhood of L.A.

http://www.nbcnews.com/business/caviar- ... -1C7339203
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Re: Caviar

#34 Post by Larry P » December 7th, 2012, 8:30 am

Trader Joe's just now has 1oz tins of American Paddlefish. Anyone care to speculate if this is worth trying? Or... back away from the cooler [shock.gif]
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Re: Caviar

#35 Post by Frank Deis » December 7th, 2012, 3:34 pm

Cuanto lo cuesta?!?
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Re: Caviar

#36 Post by Larry P » December 7th, 2012, 3:44 pm

Frank Deis wrote:Cuanto lo cuesta?!?
Good question... which I can answer now, since I just bought 1 oz for $20. Package doesn't say much: American Paddlefish/Wild/Product of USA. Eggs are dark brown/black and what I'd call medium size.
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Re: Caviar

#37 Post by Frank Deis » December 7th, 2012, 9:33 pm

At that price you can hardly go wrong.

And at that price, I want some...
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Re: Caviar

#38 Post by johngonzales » December 8th, 2012, 9:06 am

Larry P wrote:
Frank Deis wrote:Cuanto lo cuesta?!?
Good question... which I can answer now, since I just bought 1 oz for $20. Package doesn't say much: American Paddlefish/Wild/Product of USA. Eggs are dark brown/black and what I'd call medium size.

That's certainly cheap. I've seen there in years past, but never tried it. Hope it's better than the crabmeat they carry.
I typically get mine at the local culinary supply, Surfas. The domestic paddlefish is not as good as the Caspian stuff, but for the price is quite serviceable. Not a fan of the salmon variety.

Btw, our Costco now carries it as well. Anyone tried that???

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Re: Caviar

#39 Post by Larry P » December 8th, 2012, 9:53 am

I was eyeing the Costco stuff (more expensive, like $55-$65 IIRC? and I didn't take a close look at it).

The TJ's Caviar I'd describe as salty and slightly fishy, and having a mushy texture. We ended up putting it on toast points with some crème fraîche and fresh snipped chives, to help hide the texture.
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Re: Caviar

#40 Post by Barry L i p t o n » December 8th, 2012, 10:08 am

scamhi wrote:
Barry L i p t o n wrote:How is the stuff from Russ and Daughters?
eggscellent
Thanks :>)!

Any recommendation (Suzanne and others) or comments on:

Siberian Baerii
Amur Schrenckii
American Transmontanus

All similarly priced at Russ and Daughters.

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Re: Caviar

#41 Post by Robert.Fleming » December 9th, 2012, 10:14 am

The hackleback sturgeon caviar from this place is very good, and affordable in quantity: http://www.georgiaseafood.com/

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Re: Caviar

#42 Post by Frank Deis » December 9th, 2012, 3:47 pm

Thank you Robert, order placed.

P.S. --> the order came very quickly. I ordered the 4 oz of caviar plus "a box" of jumbo shrimp.

I received 5 one pound bags of frozen shrimp, in an insulated box, which provided cooling for the tin of caviar.

With one day shipping to NJ, total was $232.50

I plan to take some to a party tomorrow -- and the rest to our relatives' house for Christmas Eve.
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Re: Caviar

#43 Post by Frank Deis » December 14th, 2012, 8:16 am

Just gave it a taste -- will be serving some tonight with Gary Danko style blini (see Blini thread for link).

It's good for American. Black pearls, a little salty and a little fishy, most comparable to regular Russian beluga, which is not a bad thing. Not the caviar of my dreams but I'll probably never taste such stuff again.
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Re: Caviar

#44 Post by Larry P » December 14th, 2012, 4:44 pm

Our costco is carrying 2oz packs of some Plaza de Caviar farmed American caviar for $67, including a mother of pearl spoon. I decided to not try it since there was little info on the package what it actually contained. This is the company although I can't say for sure which product is the one at costco:
http://www.plazadecaviar.com/category_s/60.htm

They also have salmon roe for $7/4oz.

Also a collection online although none of this is exactly what's available in our costco:
http://www.costco.com/caviar.html

Interestingly they have a local storefront so I can avoid costco and any overnight shipping charges. I may check it out:
http://www.palaceoffinefoods.com/
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Re: Caviar

#45 Post by Frank Deis » December 15th, 2012, 8:04 am

I'm not sure how relevant this is because Costco probably changes suppliers -- but the caviar I have bought there around Christmas in the past was not as good as the stuff from Georgia Seafood. It's quite possible that the Plaza de Caviar stuff is just as good or better, I have no idea who produced the Costco stuff a few years back...
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Re: Caviar

#46 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » December 22nd, 2012, 4:29 pm

Costco rolling the three pack sampler.
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Re: Caviar

#47 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » December 22nd, 2012, 6:29 pm

Plated.
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Re: Caviar

#48 Post by Chris Freemott » December 22nd, 2012, 6:54 pm

How does it taste?

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Bill Tex Landreth
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Re: Caviar

#49 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » December 22nd, 2012, 6:55 pm

Like fish eggs.
It's not easy being drunk all the time. Everyone would be doing it if it were easy.

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Chris Freemott
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Re: Caviar

#50 Post by Chris Freemott » December 22nd, 2012, 6:59 pm

Nicely played. Let me try it this way, would you buy it again and serve it to Bowden?

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