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where can i find a specialty store thats sell all those crazy molecular gastronomy ingredients like agar- agar?

hungryman0930 May 20, 2007 12:56 PM


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  1. Robert Lauriston RE: hungryman0930 May 20, 2007 01:30 PM


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      PekoePeony RE: hungryman0930 May 21, 2007 09:37 AM

      Ferran Adria actually has his own line of (pricey) molecular gastronomy ingredients called Texturas. I'm not sure if you can find them at La Sanctuaire, but you can purchase them on La Tienda -- do a search on "texturas" and the products they carry will appear.


      La Sanctuaire sounds really cool though, and may be a better resource.

      2 Replies
      1. re: PekoePeony
        chemchef RE: PekoePeony May 21, 2007 09:38 AM

        I'm pretty sure I've seen agar agar at the Berkeley Bowl.

        1. re: PekoePeony
          hungryman0930 RE: PekoePeony May 24, 2007 12:33 AM

          thanks man i'll check la sanctuarie

        2. Melanie Wong RE: hungryman0930 May 21, 2007 09:41 AM

          Agar-agar is widely available and cheap at Chinese grocery stores. A 2 ounce package I have on hand was $1.49, in long strands. A quarter of a strand is enough to gel 4 cups of liquid. At this rate, this is enough for a few hundred gallons.

          4 Replies
          1. re: Melanie Wong
            rworange RE: Melanie Wong May 21, 2007 11:13 AM

            Raley's has agar-agar.

            1. re: Melanie Wong
              Paul H RE: Melanie Wong May 24, 2007 03:08 PM

              The Agar-agar @ Le Sanctuaire is $40/lb. And one pound is the least you can buy.

              1. re: Paul H
                Melanie Wong RE: Paul H May 24, 2007 03:17 PM

                The 2 ounces I bought is going to last me several years . . . and I've been using some every day or two this month. It took some experimenting. My first trial using a whole strand (or 4x what turned out to be optimal) of it was so firm, I could barely cut into it. I wish I'd tried dropping the mass on the floor, probably would have bounced!

                Do you know if what Le Sanctuaire sells is pure agar-agar? Maybe not and more is needed for the same gelling strength.

                1. re: Melanie Wong
                  Paul H RE: Melanie Wong May 24, 2007 03:53 PM

                  I would suspect that the Le Sanctuaire agar-agar is quite pure. The large amount is likely not due to reduced strength, but to the target audience of restaurants chefs who are likely to use far more of this stuff than you and I.

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              LarryW RE: hungryman0930 May 25, 2007 10:50 AM

              There is a new store somewhere in the city that sells all of that, but I can't remember the name. Until someone jars my memory for me, go to


              They have all the chemical goodies you're looking for.

              1 Reply
              1. re: LarryW
                Robert Lauriston RE: LarryW May 25, 2007 11:05 AM

                The new local store is Le Sanctuaire, see the link in my post above.

              2. Paul H RE: hungryman0930 Jan 6, 2008 07:35 PM

                Whole Foods (4th Street) sells bulk powdered agar agar for $4.55 per oz. A Chinese grocery at 1199 Stockton has the Asian stranded agar agar (Hang Loon Marine Products Co.) for $1.35 for 1.5 oz. Also, as mentioned above, Le Santuaire sells powdered agar agar for $40/lb ($2.5/oz) in 1-lb. increments only.

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                  twinpeaks RE: hungryman0930 Jan 6, 2008 07:51 PM

                  I get mine from MOM for about a buck. (Telephone brand powder, 0.88oz, made in Thailand)

                  1. janel a. RE: hungryman0930 Jan 7, 2008 12:19 AM

                    What about Rainbow? Don't they have a large selection of choice in their bulk section? I am pretty sure I saw agar-agar over there....

                    1. Paul H RE: hungryman0930 Jan 7, 2008 11:46 AM

                      Now that we've tracked down supplies of agar agar, does anyone know where small quantities of xanthan gum can be procured?

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Paul H
                        Robert Lauriston RE: Paul H Jan 7, 2008 11:49 AM

                        Le Sanctuaire.

                        Le Sanctuaire
                        315 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94108

                        1. re: Robert Lauriston
                          Paul H RE: Robert Lauriston Jan 7, 2008 11:52 AM

                          Le Santuaire only offers these bulk chemicals in 1 lb increments. I am hoping for a source of smaller amounts. Thanks.

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