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June 27, 2017 / 6:32 pm EDT
 
 

Food and Drink

Make your New Years Extra Special with Tsar Nicoulai Caviar
 
Make your New Years Extra Special with Tsar Nicoulai CaviarDec 26, 2008
 
 

If you’re looking to make your holidays a little more special, then you should definitely add some Tsar Nicoulai American caviar to your shopping list.

San Francisco-based Tsar Nicoulai is recognized as a leader in sustainable sturgeon production around the world, according to spokeswoman Alicia Engstrom. The company’s proprietary tank-farming techniques have significantly reduced the threat to declining wild stocks, while its use of water from its own natural aquifers and unique recycling programs have made the company truly earth-friendly, she said.

Tsar Nicoulai’s new sturgeon farm in Northern California is designed on the principles of Organic Food Production, which requires fostering of biodiversity, biological cycles and biological activity in an integrated system that is ecologically sustainable.

The company’s farming operations are based on strict Best Management Practices established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for aquaculture facilities. Additionally, Tsar Nicoulai employs a highly qualified and experienced technical staff to take good care of the fish and maintain daily records.

“Sturgeon is an endangered species, so by farming that helps alleviate the pressure that has been going on in places like the Caspian Sea and even here in the U.S.,” Engstrom said. “About 30 years ago we started farming the sturgeon so we would have an alternative source to produce caviar. We have our own source of water that comes from our own well. The source is from the Sierra Mountains so it’s completely untouched spring water so there’s no mercury, pollutants, residual pesticides, chemicals or anything.”

Engstrom said that means the fish are swimming in completely pristine and mineral-rich waters. In fact, she said the company’s farm is really its own micro-ecosystem. The filtered water ultimately passes through a 4-acre hydroponics pond that blooms with vegetables harvested year around, and that help the sturgeon thrive as well, she said.

While the company’s California Estate Osetra is cultivated from its aqua farm, it’s entire selection of products come from sources, both domestic and international, that have aligned themselves with Tsar Nicoulai’s pledge toward sustainability.

Engstrom said because Tsar Nicoulai caviar is farmed in the U.S., it’s always available and always fresh. Because of various permitting processes, imported caviar from the Caspian Sea, for example, is already six to eight months old when it arrives. Tsar Nicoulai caviar is also much less expensive than the imported caviar. An ounce of Tsar Nicoulai’s California Estate Osetra is $86, while Caspian caviar is $295 per ounce.


Tsar Nicoulai caviar is sold online at http://www.tsarnicoulai.com/ and at the company’s Caviar Café in San Francisco. It is also sold through Williams-Sonoma, Whole Food Markets and Dean & Deluca.

By Linda Rosencrance

 
 
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