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Caviar Etiquette and Utentils

Champagne may not be the best accompaniment to caviar


Caviar in spoon
Rita Maas/The Image Bank/Getty Images

Caviar Etiquette and Utensils

Fine caviar should be served solo, very cold, and preferably in a non-metallic bowl nested inside a larger bowl filled with ice. Silver and metal bowls and utensils should be avoided due to oxidation, which may impart a metallic taste to the caviar. Choose servers and utensils made of glass, bone, tortoise shell, wood, plastic, or to be truly traditional, mother-of-pearl or gold.

Fine caviar is best served simply, with toast points or bland, unsalted crackers. Although purists will disagree, believing nothing should interfere with the flavor of fine caviar, common accompaniments include lemon wedges, sour cream, creme fraiche, hard-cooked egg (yolks and whites chopped separately), and minced onion. Lesser quality caviar products may well benefit from these garnishes.

Purists will also disagree with the commonly preferred libation of champagne, and demand only a straight shot of the finest frozen vodka.

Don't be a piggy guest when served caviar as an hors d'oeuvre, no matter how much you might be tempted by its luscious flavor. It's considered gauche to eat more than an ample serving of about two ounces, or about two spoonfuls.

The finest caviar should taste neither fishy nor overly salty. Connoisseurs look for shiny, fine-grained egg globules.

More about Caviar:

What is caviar? FAQ
Caviar History
How to identify real caviar
Caviar Varieties and Terms
Caviar Selection and Storage
Caviar Etiquette and Utensils
Finding Affordable Caviar
Caviar Cooking Tips
Caviar and Health
Caviar Recipes
Caviar Photo © 2009 Peggy Trowbridge Filippone, licensed to About.com, Inc.


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