News alert: Fresh durian crisis

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I’ll just say it: Chances of scoring fresh durian on Oahu this winter are as remote as the Southeast Asian jungles they come from.

It breaks my heart to drop this bombshell on you. It literally knocked the breath out of me, hearing one grower after another spell out this doom.

“It’s been a sparse season,” said the Big Island’s Wailea Agricultural Group, source of 100 percent of my delectable durian. “We’re only harvesting two or three a week, and I don’t think any of that’s gone off-island.”

I began to plead. “But people are waiting!” I said. “I blogged about durian, and people got interested and I converted them!”

I was embarrassing myself. I couldn’t stop. “I videotaped people throwing up durian, and even more people got interested. We’ve been waiting!”

“Oh.”

Wailea Ag took down my number, in case they find an extra durian they can FedEx to me. I was halfway buoyed.

But realistic. I called Frankie’s Nursery in Waimanalo.

“No durian this year,” Frankie’s said.

It was involuntary, the sudden and complete expulsion of air. It was as if the king of fruits had punctured my lungs with its inch-long thorns. “What?” I hissed. “Zero? Zero durian this year?”

I could hear Frankie’s trying not to laugh. “It’s every other year,” she said. “We had a lot last year. Try us again next year.”

Should I fly to Hilo? What if I get to Hilo and there’s no durian? Should I wait for mangosteen season in Vietnam, head there in May and get my durian at the same time? Seems almost efficient, no?

One more hope: Maui. I googled, then picked up the phone and called Ono Organic Farms in Hana.

“We have the only durian on Maui, as far as I know,” Ono said, “and I can’t even tell you if there are any out there now. We had some earlier. Try us in a month.”

So there you have it. The sad state of fresh durian in Hawaii this season. I haven’t even tried Kauai. I can’t take it.

If you know of any fresh durian in the state, PUH-LEEZ pleasepleaseplease let me know. I promise I’ll share the news with everybody. I’ll even share the durian.

Maybe.

16 comments
localgirl
localgirl

We had several durian on our tree this year that just fell on the ground and rotted.  Our dogs wouldn't even go near it.  Poho!

harrycovair
harrycovair

No Durian in Chinatown that I can find. Lots of Soursop and Ulu (Breadfruit) though. I even saw Cherimoya in one of the stands.

Amy1
Amy1

Well I not into durian so eat jackfruit instead for a while. I really try to get use to taste but the smell kill my desire for it .

jlieu
jlieu

Its really going to be ok... LOL

turkfontaine
turkfontaine

the Thai woman who owns my favorite San Diego fro-yo shop, Yog-Art, told me this am that Viendong, my favorite San Diego Asian market had a few durian. then she said; 'but don't bother. they're no good.'

just as the EU crisis is likely to send the US economy spiraling down again, it looks like the durian crisis is shaping up to be a deprivation of biblical proportions. dig in. the end may be near.

lihinggirl
lihinggirl

hope u find durian soon! *wonder if my baby son would enjoy pureed durian* =P

nonstopmari
nonstopmari moderator

@harrycovair cherimoya? that's a score! love cherimoya, don't care for atemoya. did u see mangosteen?

nonstopmari
nonstopmari moderator

@Amy1 amyamyamy, durian is 1/3 taste, 1/3 texture and 1/3 AROMA. jackfruit is crunchy and has no smell :(

harrycovair
harrycovair

@lihinggirl @nonstopmari Less work to eat the Durian but you'll need culinary skills to slice open the thick skin and spoon out the Durian meat first.

I need to find that video where the Thai guy cuts open a Durian and spoons out the flesh in 10 seconds. 1 sharp knife, 2 spoons and it's served.

lihinggirl
lihinggirl

@nonstopmari that's true 'bout durian. less work when u don't have to boil/steam/roast/mash/puree a food. hope my kid is that enthusiastic 'bout trying a variety of foods. =)