Been pining for that special Central Asian pop in your mouth ever since imports of caviar from the Caspian Sea were restricted in 2005? Well, the international regulating body that sets caviar export quotas has decided that sevruga and osetra can be sold this year.
As reported by Florence Fabricant in The New York Times (requires registration), the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, or CITES, believes that the Caspian’s sturgeon stocks are being managed sufficiently to allow harvesting this year by companies in Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan.
But the cream of the crop—satiny-salty beluga—is still on the forbidden list, since years of overfishing and pollution have damaged the beluga sturgeon most of all. And don’t fire up the toast points yet: Caviar from the 2007 catch won’t be available for at least two more months.