Since moving to China I have had a hard time finding good rice since I can't buy based on the package anymore (language barrier) and I need to figure out how to choose rice by sight/smell/feel. A lot of the rice here is starchy and flavourless, cooking up very opaque with not much texture. I like rice to have some fragrance but the texture is most important. My thoughts are I should be looking for rice with shorter, rounder grains.
I notice other shoppers smelling the kernels, any idea what they are looking for? And I notice that in the markets some rice is labeled 'new rice' or 'this year's rice', would this rice have more flavour than other types, or less?
Any light that can be shed would be greatly appreciated.