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Alphonso Mango

  • EATTV May 2, 2007 11:18 AM
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I am told that this season Alphonso Mangoes (the holy grail of mangoes) from India will be available in the U.S. Anyone had one and can attest to its claim as the world's sweetest? Sources?

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  1. Except for a batch or two, I don't think the Alphonso Mango from India has truly arrived in the U.S. yet. That said, I can't wait for it!

    I grew up in India and have eaten many varieties in the country and after I moved here tried out the ones available here and I can say nothing beats the Alphonso. The Alphonso rules because of the beautiful golden color flesh of the fruit, its fragrance, firm yet soft flesh and sweetness.

    That combination is what makes it so perfect. You can get of those individual qualities in other varieties but put together it becomes the Alphonso--the king of fruits :)

    8 Replies
    1. re: nuttie_cat

      Indian mangoes just started to come into the US last Friday.

      1. re: JMF

        Did you see them in a market yet? Where are you located?

        1. re: sweetTooth

          The NY Times had an article about it today.

          http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/02/din...

          1. re: JMF

            I got the Alphonso and Kesar Mangoes in several stores on Moody Street in Waltham beginning last week. They are gold skinned and red shouldered with safron colored flesh. I liked the Kesar better but both were rich and sweet that make lesser Mangoes pale beside them. The Kesar may have survived the flight and radiation better. Very delicious at about $3.50 a throw.

             
            1. re: EATTV

              I listened to the story on NPR the other day and happened to be in Patel Brothers on Moody St in Waltham, MA and saw two varieties of mangoes. One was red and round (from Mexico) and the other golden and pear shapped (didn't get the name or origin but sounds like it might have been the Alphonso). I decided to try the golden one because it felt soft to the touch, but once I tasted, found it to be too tart to eat. Should I let it ripen more, or this possibly not an Alphonso?

              1. re: Bridge66

                If you paid $30 for a box of 9-12 mangos then you got the Indian mangos. If not then you got the altoufo mango. Indian mangos only have to be light green or yellowish color to be extremely sweet and intensely aromatic, and not tart. I am glad the season is coming to an end because I've been spending $60/wk for the past 2 months on such Indian mangos.

      2. re: nuttie_cat

        Hello guys!! nice information for me , actully i came here in usa couple years ago, tried my best to find good mangoes from pakistan, but always have mexican bitter mangoes like lemon, sorry to say, maybe it was because i ate a lot of mangoes in pakistan in summer season:) Can you guys tell me where i can find the pakistan mangoes( anwer ratol, dhusri, sindhri, langra, chonsa etc) anywhere in USA or Canada? My brother exports all kinds of mangoes and veg to UK and Germany, If Even Anybody can help me to start business, i would love to go for that, thanks. Happy Mango Session!!!

        1. re: aamir

          The mangoes of the Saraiki belt are true jewels, but even Indian mangoes couldn't come to the US until Bush Mian signed an agreement with the Indian gov't last year in a gesture of friendship. It would be great if PK mangoes were available to Americans so they could taste the glory as well, but it would take a change in US policy.

      3. I finally got to buy & try the Alphonso mango this week. I'm in the San Jose CA area. My alphonsos were green tinged with light peachy pinkish shoulders, and turned yellow-all around when ripe. I was also offered Kesars, but I had not heard of them before so I passed. My detailed post is on the SF Board:
        http://www.chowhound.com/topics/39774...

        Pictures at:
        http://www.kodakgallery.com/Slideshow...

        1. I don't want to start a mango war or nothing... actually, yes I do. ;)

          No doubt Alphonso and Kesar mangos are better than all other mangoes available in the United States. However, the (Anwar) Ratol and Chonsa mangoes from Pakistan are, respectively, even better than those two. Sadly, until the U.S. allows importing of Pakistani agricultural items, you'll have to cross the border into Canada to taste them. They are easier to find across the pond in England, though. I have found Ratols to be consistently less fibrous (if you can believe it's possible) than Alphonsos. The one and only true king of fruits.

          13 Replies
          1. re: bmorecupcake

            I think they are all equal but in different ways. Hey is the anwaratol (i never heard anyone just say ratol) the same as a dussehri? I always get those confused.

            1. re: luckyfatima

              Nope, the dussehri is quite different from what I recall. I haven't been to Pakistan in 5 yrs so the exact details elude me at the moment. (Edit: My dad said the dussehris in his native Multan are sweeter and look distinctly different than anwaratols, but the anwaratols still taste better.)

              My mom's side of the family actually grow mangoes (in Punjab) for "fun", sort of like mango connoisseurs. They call it "anwaratol". My in-laws have a fruit business in Lahore, but grow their mangoes in the Sindh region, and the first time I heard someone say just "ratol" was from them, but I have heard it more since.

              1. re: bmorecupcake

                yes the short of the anwar ratol is ratol , dhushari is quite different from ratol. plz give me little more info where you guys find these mangoes with the name of cities. thanks

                1. re: aamir

                  hehehe I live in Dubai so we get the best of the Indian AND Pakistani mangoes basically from April till mid-August!

                  1. re: aamir

                    You can walk up to any fruit seller in Multan and find all of them, and they will only have travelled a couple miles... hehe, oh you meant stateside?

                    You won't find Pakistani mangos in the US due to import restrictions, and even Indian mangoes are very hard to come by. I can't even find Pakistani mango pulp here! (I always have to buy the Indian one.) In Toronto, I was served ratols and chonsas by family, although I'm not sure exactly which shop they bought them from. Maybe someone brought some back over from Pakistan. We used to do that back in the day, but now US customs is extremely strict about these things. But I distinctly recall my relatives there saying Pakistani mangoes were available now.

                    Funny thing is that now in Pakistan they are growing alphonsos, because of the international demand for these. They get sent to India, where they are packed and then shipped. I know this has happened with rice for a while.

                    1. re: bmorecupcake

                      bmorecupcake: can you ask a relative why those anwar rathol mangoes have that name? Someone told me they are named for the farmers Anwar Baig and Rathol who planted the first seed or something, but I'd like to know more.

                      1. re: luckyfatima

                        That was my first question when I heard the name anwar ratol. The Anwar part no one I asked really knows for sure, but get ready for Pakistan's dirty little secret. Ratol is actually a place in India, close to Delhi (Meerut maybe?), where the mango originated. For whatever reason, hardly any anwaratols are grown in India anymore and are now considered Pakistani mangos. I guess Alphonso is preferred over there, although I think it has more to do with the international (moneymaking) appeal of Alphonso. It travels well, and is more well-suited to "western" tastes whereas desis often like things sweeter (evidence burfee). I've spoken to so many people about mangos past couple days and many, Pakistanis and Indians alike, will admit to liking Chaunsa or Dussheri over Ratol and Alphonso because they are sweeter.

                        1. re: bmorecupcake

                          Ah thanks, you know I got really interested and googled it, it turns out that Rathaul is a small town in U.P. as you say. I don't think it is a dirty secret that the mango's original seed is Indian, I think there is a lot in Pakistan with an Indian seed and that's just a fact of history. Anyway, it may be also that the anwaratol went to Sindh before the border actually existed.

                          That's an interesting point about the sweetness factor.

                          1. re: luckyfatima

                            My version was more tantalizing. :)

                      2. re: bmorecupcake

                        guys can you tell me where you guys which city you guys live and how to find the stores where pakistani and indian mangoes are available?

                      3. re: aamir

                        Hi Aamir please email me your contact information if you are interested on importing mangoes to the U.S.

                  2. re: bmorecupcake

                    Many varieties of mangoes are widely consumed in Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia. What do they consider to be the true king of fruits? Durian. I love mango, but even the best mango is considered pedestrian next to a decent durian by those who've grown up eating both in those countries. And I know no other group of people who are so obsessed with food like Singaporeans. Maybe just chalk it up to different strokes...

                    1. re: bmorecupcake

                      I have eaten alphonso and kesar all summer here in Boston. I'd like to try Pakistani mangos when I'm in Toronto next weekend. Please tell me where to go in Missisauga and which type to get that is better than the alphonso or kesar. Thanks.

                    2. I don't want to be a mango buzz kill, but the Alphonsoes out this early are premature and though they have a nice smell, they are mealy, and not at their best. Wait about a month, in late April or May you will be getting the superb, creamy as custard, luscious superior Alphonsoes.

                      I love alphonsoes but I also have a passion for the later mango-season dussehri and the end of mango-season chaunsa! MMMMM! I can't wait for the good ones to come. It means luscious mangos from April to August!

                      Those of you who have tried the pre-season alphonsoes, don't judge yet...wait a month or so and see! Also, the alphonoes out after mid-June or so (whenever the monsoon starts) will once again be inferior cuz as soon as the water hits the ground, the Alfonso season ends.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: luckyfatima

                        I live in India and prefer Thai Mangos myself. Hrading there tomorrow to stuuf myself with unripe, ripe any Mango I can get my hands on!!

                        1. re: luckyfatima

                          I live in Singapore, it's getting more difficult to get Alphonsos and Banganappali (Benishan) now (end of their respective seasons probably). I can't wait to try Anwarratol, Chaunsa and Dussehri to see how sweet they really are (like Indians & Pakistanis, I love my mangoes very sweet, found alphonso a tad sourish and not as sweet as Banganappali). Was offered Sindhri, but I passed after the seller commented that it was not as good as Banganappali.

                          Does anyone know, other than Mustafa, where can I find Indian's and Pakistani's mangoes sold in S'pore?

                        2. Ok this is a dumb question, but is the alphonso mango same as the ataulfo mango?

                          6 Replies
                          1. re: moh

                            I'm wondering the same

                            1. re: chocabot

                              I tried to google it, but I did not find a definitive answer. From pictures, it seem they are not exactly the same. The alphonso mangoes had a green-red glow that I've never seen on the ataulfo mangoes I have been gorging on recently (they are so good!). Also the little dimple in the side was less pronounced on the alphonso mango. Ataulfo mangos seem to often come from Mexico, not India, but I did see one mention of Indian ataulfo mangos. So are they the same variety? anyone?

                              1. re: moh

                                Chocobat, someone on the Quebec board said that the Alphonso and the Ataulfo are not the same variety. So I guess I'll have to search out the Alphonso mangos.

                                1. re: moh

                                  moh, I just discovered DHL Mango Express, which ships ripe-in-time, hand-picked Alphonso mangoes, to more than 50 countries world-wide, fortunately for you, including Canada, and sadly for me, excluding USA....; (

                                  http://203.199.200.2/dhl/mangoexpress/

                                  1. re: formosalily

                                    Formosalily, you are the best! Such a wonderfully thoughtful person, with my Chow interests in mind! I shall keep this in mind, but I have heard on the grapevine that Montreal will get Alphonso mangos soon,and so I may be able to buy a box soon...

                                    Please seriously consider a trip here soon, I'd love to show you around town... it seems we would eat very well together :)

                                    1. re: moh

                                      Moh, I would love to visit Montreal again.... especially now I have a reliable source for scoops on where to find good eats there! I could see us having a good time sharing a lovely conversation about food over food. ; )

                                      Look forward to your report on Alphonso mangos!

                          2. The Alphonsos are ambrosial indeed and all the subcontinental groceries on Moody Street in Waltham import them since the embargo was lifted but the US still radiates the fruits to make the pits inert. had the last season after a long wait. Golden sweet and juicy . Worth the waiting

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: EATTV

                              Where in montreal and Toronto can I get alphonso mangoes? TIA.

                              1. re: joebloe

                                Joebloe, there is an Alphonso watch out in Montreal. Best to check the Quebec Board once in a while, there should be posts soon.

                            2. I live in Florida where mangos are falling off the neighbourhood trees right now. Did not realise there were so many varieties. I just picked one off my tree a few minutes ago which was delicious but I do not know which type it is.

                              But my neighbour who is from Thailand gave me some of her Thai mangos last week which were more perfumed and came away from the pit very easily. Also around my neighbourhood are very small mangos almost the size of large plums - good but messy and not much flesh.

                              1. Visiting Toronto right now and we have been feasting on Anwar Ratols and Chonsas like there's no tomorrow. Got lucky with the Ratols and then set up a stakeout outside the Pakistani grocer Friday waiting for the fresh shipment of Chonsas to be put out. Pics follow.

                                Kohinoor Foods, 1438 Gerrard Street East

                                (Edit: Sorry, having trouble uploading pics, but here are two of an Anwar Ratol. One is next to a business card to get an idea of size. Wish you could smell them.)

                                 
                                 
                                7 Replies
                                1. re: bmorecupcake

                                  Here are some other pics:

                                  Outside of box (same for Ratols and Chonsas): http://www.picturepush.com/public/187...
                                  Box of Ratols: http://www.picturepush.com/public/187...
                                  Ratol split open: http://www.picturepush.com/public/187...
                                  Box of Chonsas: http://www.picturepush.com/public/187...
                                  Chonsa next to Ratol: http://www.picturepush.com/public/187...
                                  Chonsa split open: http://www.picturepush.com/public/187...

                                  1. re: bmorecupcake

                                    gorgeous, loving it!

                                  2. re: bmorecupcake

                                    You are the best Bmorecupcake! We are also in TO right now, and we picked up both types today! I will have some for breakfast. Thanks so much!!!

                                    1. re: moh

                                      I have eaten alphonso and kesar all summer long here in Boston. I'd like to try Pakistani mangos when I'm in Toronto next weekend. Please tell me where to go in Missisauga and which type to get that is better than the alphonso or kesar. Thanks.

                                      1. re: joebloe

                                        As far as which type is better than Alphonso or Kesar, that will be for you to decide after tasting if any are actually better. The two most popular are Chonsa and Anwar Ratol. Not sure where to buy in Mississauga, though.

                                        1. re: bmorecupcake

                                          Where can I get them in Toronto?

                                          1. re: joebloe

                                            Kohinoor Foods, 1438 Gerrard Street East.