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What Does Caviar Taste Like? (Also, how to serve it)

What Does Caviar Taste Like? (Also, how to serve it)

The name caviar comes from the terms ‘Caviare’ and ‘Caviarie’ that have their etymological origin from a Turkish word ‘Havyar’.

Before truffles and raw oysters were a thing, caviar was a delicacy that was specifically reserved for royalty.

Ancient Romans, Greeks, and Russians were known to spend a fortune just to enjoy caviar.

It’s often eaten raw and served on appetizers.

The highest quality caviar is sourced from the Black Sea and the Caspian, but it’s now harvested all over the world as a result of overfishing.

In this blog post, we’ll take a look at what caviar tastes like and what makes it so expensive.

What Is Caviar Made out Of?

Caviar is basically roe or eggs taken from the sturgeon family of fish.

Caviar of the highest quality comes from eggs that are harvested as the female sturgeon fish prepare to spawn.

They’re caught as they’re making their way from saltwater to freshwater streams or rivers in order to lay their eggs.

Farmed sturgeon are monitored closely to determine whether they’re eggs are ready for harvesting or not. Sturgeon can release up to several million eggs at once, depending on their size.

What Does Caviar Taste Like?

It’s not easy to describe the flavor of caviar as it varies from fish to fish.

The more you try it, the more you’ll start to notice the subtle differences between the flavors and find one that’s more to your liking.

Caviar texture also has a part to play in the flavor and adds to the overall experience of eating it.

The one word that’s mostly used to describe the taste of caviar is salty, but that also depends on the variety of fish.

The tiny eggs, once consumed, burst in your mouth and release a buttery, smooth, and sometimes nutty taste.

Some kinds of caviar are more fishy or briny in flavor than other types.

Does All Caviar Taste the Same?

Experts believe that there are about 15 flavors you can taste when you’re enjoying caviar, and they can vary from one roe to another.

All the species have their own unique flavor, but you’ll be surprised to learn that sometimes, caviar that comes from the same species of fish can also taste vastly different.

This can be attributed to a number of factors:

  • The age and size of the fish
  • The health of the fish
  • The amount of salt that was used in the production
  • Whether it was wild-caught or raised in a fish farm
  • The time and place where the fish was harvested
  • Whether the roe was frozen or kept fresh after it was harvested
  • The amount of time it was kept in storage for
  • The container was packaged in

Why Is It So Expensive?

The most expensive type of caviar comes from the osetra and beluga species of sturgeon. Beluga caviar is the rarest and most expensive out of all caviar.

It can’t be found in the states due to government regulations and overfishing.

The following factors generally have a role to play in the price of most types of caviar:

  • The quality of the salted roe
  • The time it took to produce the roe
  • The amount of salt that was used in the production
  • The harvesting and manufacturing process
  • Supply and demand

How to Eat Caviar

Caviar is enjoyed not just for its taste but also for its appearance. Here are some ways you can eat caviar:

On Ice

Caviar can be enjoyed by itself. Serve it on a bed of ice to keep it chilled.

It’s typically eaten with a unique spoon made of bone or mother pearl, as metal spoons are known to give it a metallic and unpleasant taste.

It’s best enjoyed in small bites so you can fully experience all the flavors.

As a garnish

It’s also served as a garnish on appetizers. It can be spread on crispy, buttered toast, Russian pancakes (also known as blinis), or baked Crostini.

As a pairing

It can be paired with other foods with simpler flavors so the taste and texture of caviar can truly shine through.

It can be mixed into a dollop of crème fraîche as the creamy texture beautifully supplements the salty and slightly buttery taste of caviar.

Final Words

Ancient Russians were known to enjoy caviar on a baked potato, but it’s truly up to you how you choose to serve it. Feel free to add it as a topping on your pizza or burger for a more enriched flavor.

You should store your unpasteurized caviar in the coldest region of your fridge before you’re ready to consume it.

An unopened tin can of caviar can be refrigerated for up to two weeks, whereas an opened jar will only last for about 2 to 3 days.

We hope this blog post taught you a great deal about caviar!

Rebecca Gardner

Tuesday 9th of March 2021

I'm glad you mentioned that caviar can be used as a garnish on things like toast, Russian pancakes, or Crostini. I'm planning an elegant birthday party for my sister this summer and I want to buy some caviar online to serve there. Thanks for teaching me about easy paring to use to incorporate caviar into the appetizers for the party.