Gourmet Foods 101
Did you know?
"Some species of sturgeon have been known to live longer than 100 years"

Russian Caviars

It Just says Impressive

Russian caviars are generally considered to be among the best, if not actually the best in the world. Most Russian caviars come from several types of sturgeon that are found in the Caspian Sea. However, when the Soviet Empire fell a few years ago, sturgeon fishing became harder to control, and the fish almost became extinct. This made Russian caviar a highly prized and expensive gourmet food to obtain.

There are several types of Russian caviars including Osetra caviar, Sevruga caviar and Beluga caviar. These caviars are all derived from sturgeons that take a long time to reach maturity.

Russian caviars are often high in demand, but short on supply. This means they can cost you over $1,000 for a 16-ounce tin, if you are lucky enough to find one. The best Russian caviars should have a bright, glossy color, a fresh mild smell, uniformly sized eggs and a light salty flavor to them. They should also have a firm, not soft, texture.

The finest large, shiny Russian caviar is generally believed to be the Beluga caviar, with Beluga being the largest species of the sturgeon. The eggs are about 2.5 millimeters in diameter and they are grey to dark grey in color. The caviar has a delicate, rich and creamy texture to it.

Grey Beluga caviar is a paler shade than Beluga caviar, but it is just as delicious and valuable. Osetra caviar is yellow to brownish in color, with an earthy, complex and refined taste, while Sevruga caviar is light to dark grey and slightly fruity, mild and sweet in taste.

Russian caviars are packaged in one, two and five ounce containers or 100, 200, 300 and 500 gram tins. In Europe, ounces are replaced by 50-gram increments.

  • Grade one caviar is made of intact eggs.
  • Grade two caviar has 50 percent broken pieces and/or soft eggs.
  • Pressed caviar has more than 50 percent broken and milk-white eggs, which is usually the result of inclement weather or improper handling.

Russian caviars contain about 52 percent water, 28 percent protein, 16 percent fat, 1.5 percent sugar, 1.0 percent vitamins and trace constituents.