How to taste caviar? As with wine, tasting caviar can be learned. Knowing how to detect good caviar from bad, knowing how to appreciate good caviar is important! Time and experience will teach you to appreciate a good caviar, in the meantime here are some basic gestures through your senses.
The first step to taste the caviar: the nose
A good caviar does not smell anything. For example, when you buy Beluga caviar, if there is a fishy or other odor, the caviar is out of date or has been stored improperly. It may not be suitable for tasting.
The color of caviar
The color of a caviar depends both on the species of sturgeon it comes from, but also on the individual characteristics of the fish that produce it. Thus, within the same species, there is sometimes a variety of colors. However, the external appearance of the fish does not determine the color of its caviar. In addition, the range of colors that can be seen at the time of production narrows with salting and refining. These last operations can indeed modify the color of the caviar. Caviars tend to darken.
The texture of caviar
Firm, melting or both at the same time, each caviar has its particularity and its amateurs. Generally, a firm texture means that the caviar is young and not very matured. However, some can pasteurize caviar to extend its shelf life. This method firms the texture of the egg but also makes it lose flavor.
The taste of caviar
Like wine, caviar presents a wide range of flavors which vary according to the quality of the caviar, the species, but also the production and conservation methods … Before appreciating it, we will first research the possible defects of a caviar. The famous parasitic tastes, like the taste of earth or mud. Over the course of the tasting, the taste of the caviar can evolve and the aromas assert themselves. More or less iodized, buttered, aromas of oysters, hazelnuts, almonds …
The royal tasting
Some prefer to taste their caviar directly on the skin on the back of the hand at the start of the thumb. This is called a royal tasting. It is said that this tradition and its name come from the time of the tsars’ tasters. They were responsible for tracking down poison in the food. Today, “royal” tasting is practiced by many professionals who taste different caviar in succession. They thus avoid the potential taste of a spoon. The royal tasting therefore allows you to appreciate the caviar without parasitic taste, but also to warm the eggs a little in contact with the skin.
How to accompany and taste caviar?
Caviar is best enjoyed plain, using a small spoon made of mother-of-pearl, horn, porcelain or plastic. Prefer a natural and light material to preserve the aromas and not to break the grains.
Let the grains burst on the tongue and enjoy the complexity of the aromas that develop for a long time.