Caviar Knowledge Guide
All Caviar Is Not Created Equal
The environment, aquaculture farming practices and dietary factors all impact the quality of a sturgeon’s roe. Factors like water purity, a high-quality diet and a low density of fish contribute to the final taste and quality of the caviar.
At Black River we make our feed, maintain low fish density and our fish mature in fresh flowing river water – not in closed tanks with recirculated water. Our sturgeon are well nourished and live in clean water throughout their lives.
Salt & Preparation
MALOSSOL is a Russian term (literal translation "little salt"). It is a minimal salt preparation to cure fresh caviar with up to 5% added salt (3-3.5% is optimal). Malossol is preferred by experts. Black River is Malossol caviar.
Other preparations are:
SALTED CAVIAR known as “semi preserved” caviar with up to 8% salt;
PRESSED CAVIAR made of roe that is too soft, broken, damaged or overripe;
PASTURIZED CAVIAR is heat-treated and vacuum packed in glass jars to extend shelf life.
Caviar texture and flavor evolve over time depending on a myriad of factors. The preparation method, time, and storage of the large original tins or “OTs” contribute to how well caviar ages.
Once caviar is repacked into smaller, metal tins the maturation accelerates. It’s important to keep caviar in the coldest part of the refrigerator and consume before the expiry date.
Caviar is sold in grams. The metal tins used to repack caviar vary in size from 20g up to 1000g (or 1kg).
Vacuum sealed tins are best for keeping fresh, Malossol caviar intact. Glass jars generally for pasteurized caviar.
The “gold standard” of caviar tins are made by Desjardin in France. Black River proudly uses Desjardin tins for our caviars.
Grades & Quality
no matter which species - caviar is graded on size, color, texture and flavor.
Standards will vary between producers and brands.
Black River produces 4 grades of caviar distinguished by these factors.
Our richest, rarest caviar with an intensely complex yet delicate, salted cream and hazelnut flavor.
Eggs are 3.2+mm.
Light-brown to caramel colored eggs with a subtle, saline-infused richness and nutty, delicate character.
3.05mm to 3.2mm eggs.
Grey-brown eggs with a light sea breeze flavor accented by savory notes and a distinct creaminess.
2.95mm to 3.05mm eggs
Darker brown to black colored eggs with distinctly nutty flavors complimented by a lively, saline lift.
2.95mm eggs, or smaller.
Caviar Serving Tips
Do's and don'ts of serving caviar
KEEP IT COOL
But not too cool. Don’t put caviar in the freezer – it should be stored between 26 to 32 degrees F in the coldest part of your refrigerator
Serve caviar in small doses (~20g per guest when serving hor d’ouevres at a party) – a small amount delivers incredible flavor.
Keep pairings simple. Dry white wine, champagne, vodka or tequila. Overly strong drinks will overpower caviar's delicate taste.
Serve Caviar with Mother-of-Pearl spoons made from the smooth, iridescent shell of an oyster. It's a must.
Educate your Palate
Train your palate to become a "caviar connoisseur" with our BLACK RIVER TRIO
The trio includes 20g each of our Tradition, Royale and Imperial Oscietra caviar, plus a mother-of-pearl spoon and our BRC tin opener.
You have everything for a delicious comparative tasting session. Learning never tasted so good.