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Siberian Caviar

Origin of Siberian Sturgeon Caviar

The Siberian sturgeon (Acipenser baerii) is, as it's name suggests, native to the Siberian region of Asia. This ancient fish was promulgated throughout central Russia and the northwest territories of China during the 19th century. It was during this time that the Siberian sturgeon gained popularity in the court of the Russian Tsars. Upon completion of the Trans-Siberian railroad in 1916, rapid delivery of this once elusive delicacy was enabled without hindrance. Now easily transported directly from it's wild habitat in any one of the numerous Ob tributaries to the cities where the elite clamored for it.


History of Wild Siberian Sturgeon

The Siberian Sturgeon, in it's native wild-river habitat, would reach a weight of up to 400 lbs and have a life expectancy that could exceed half a century. During the course of their life the wild sturgeon would complete the perilous trek up a tumultuous river, north towards the Arctic Sea, numerous times. The tenacious sturgeon reached optimal maturity in females for harvest of caviar eggs at above the age of twenty years. Unfortunately, recent structural changes to the sturgeons native habitat such as dams, development or other environmental factors has strongly impacted this magnificent and historical species population.


Taste of Siberian Caviar

Fortunately the advent of aquaculture farming of the sturgeon has created a resurgence in their population, even if only in non-wild habitats. A comprehensive study of the species led aquaculture farmers to a groundbreaking discovery. Siberian sturgeon actually thrive and achieve caviar-readiness at a far more rapid pace if they are introduced to a fresh spring water environment during their spawning cycle. Meaning they could be ready to produce eggs by the age of ten years versus the previously restrictive minimum of twenty years. This was an unexpected discovery. Seemingly, the unexpected turgid state rivers reach, if their usual fresh mountain or spring water tributaries are curtailed, hampered the sturgeons' ability to reach caviar readiness. This, and subsequent failed attempts at Siberian sturgeon farming without the use of adequate filtration systems, caused the caviar to sometimes have a muddy or "off" taste. However the highly efficient and sustainable techniques used by the carefully cultivated producers of Montecito Caviar, can now offer the same taste, texture, and experience once only rivaled by wild-caught Siberian sturgeons' caviar.