By Sandy Daenerys
Tsar Nicoulai Caviar, a world-renowned American caviar brand locally produced outside Sacramento, is now available at Whole Foods Market in Northern California. Originally from San Francisco, Tsar Nicoulai offers artisanal handcrafted white sturgeon caviar, sustainably and naturally sourced, free of antibiotics, GMOs and preservatives.
For the last 30 years, this devoted caviar producer has crafted a fresh and natural product free of the dangers of mercury and produced with a pioneering environmentally-friendly process that takes pressure off wild fish populations. Cultivated in small batches with great attention to detail, Tsar Nicoulai lives by a philosophy of farm to table and respect for nature, yielding a caviar that is of the highest quality and integrity.
Whole Foods Market is proud to bring this innovator of sustainable and exquisite caviar to the Bay Area and Northern California, offering caviar fans and food enthusiasts the finest and healthiest product available with seven distinct varieties of Tsar Nicoulai Caviar.
At their tasting event in San Francisco's Potrero Hill, Whole Foods Market offered premium quality champagne to pair with their fine selection of Tsar Nicoulai Caviar, offering a wide range of caviar and roe options priced from as low as $14.99 and up to $74.99. Seafood Team Leader, Greg Magnuson, from their Franklin Street location in San Francisco, led the tasting and provided an informative introduction into the world of caviar with delicate pairings of select champagne, wine, and hors d'oeuvres.
My personal favorites include:
Gold Pearl Trout Roe - Smoked Trout: Overall great price and quality. Savory and lightly smoked flavor.
Reserve Caviar: Although expensive, the delicately smooth and delightfully creamy and buttery flavor of the caviar was well worth the price.
FOOD PAIRING & UTENSIL RECOMMENDATIONS
Provided by Nutrition Chef Annie Wang
Caviar Pairing Recommendations
Plain salted potato chips & crème fraîche
Deviled eggs or boiled eggs
Savory panna cotta
Shortbread with lemon & sea salt
Rice & seaweed (sushi)
Japanese-style pickled vegetables
Inert materials such as mother-of-pearl, abalone, gold, animal horn & wood are the preferred material for caviar spoons, although plastic can also be used; they don’t taint the flavor like metal spoons do
AVAILABLE AT WHOLE FOODS MARKETS IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
TSAR NICOULAI CAVIAR + ROE SELECTION
Reserve Caviar (1 oz) - $74.99
Gold Pearl Trout Roe - Smoked Trout (2 oz) - $17.99
Gold Pearl Salmon Roe (2 oz) - $14.99
California Estate Sturgeon Caviar (1 oz) - $64.99
Classic Sturgeon Caviar (1 oz) - $39.99
Natural Tobiko Caviar (2 oz) - $14.99
Truffled Whitefish Roe (3.5 oz) - $39.99
Red: Cuvee Papale Chateauneuf-du-Pape - $20
White: Charles Bove Vouvray - $17
Sparkling: J. Lassalle Premier Cru Brut Champagne - $40
Sparkling: Domaine Allimant-Laugner Cremant d'Alsace Brut Rose - $21