Lychee sightings - Miami
Does everyone know it's lychee season? Yesterday I decided to give some Sweethearts to Kristin and Brendan over at Whisk, and the place went quite as I handed them over. All the people were like OMG fresh lychee, and everyone was looking at me. I just wanted to get out of there and just blurted out some thing about the difference of Sweethearts and Mauritius lychees.
Just in case you didn't know I'm going to give you some info. The farmer prices I've been hearing is $5/lb for Mauritius. I've seen Mauritius going for $12/lb, Outrageous! Below is a list of store I've seen lychees in recently and in the past. All were selling Mauritius lychees, but now Brewsters and Sweethearts should be showing up.
1. Pinecrest Wayside Market
$6/lb saw them about 2 weeks ago. Basket on the counter
2. P.K. Oriental Mart
$6/lb about 3 weeks ago
3. Wild Oats in Pinecrest
$10/lb these were still attached to the pannicle (stem). 2 weeks ago
4. Whole Foods in South Miami
$9/lb 2 weeks ago. Rotten, as soon as I got close, the smell got to me. I didn't even pick one up to touch it. They had a sign saying they were from Red Dragon Fruit Company, but the rottenness I suspect is due to the store handling.
$12/lb not including shipping. Bill buys fruit from other growers and resells them. You can go to his grove and pick them up, but when ever I went he only had Mauritius. His grove is only Maurtitius.
6. Norman Brothers Market
Have seen lychees in the past.
7. Gardner's Market.
Have seen lychees in the past at the Coconut grove store, and at the South Miami store last year I bought some Emperor lychees from Red Dragon Fruit Compant
8. Homestead Flea Market?
I don't know the name but its the place on 248 ST and US1
Of course there is Robert is Here, and other Asian markets, and you can drive around Homestead on the weekends. You see people selling them on the road or outside their house. I bought some once at a house on the way to Fruit and Spice park. I'll try and make a list of mangoes sellers later.
Norman Brothers Produce
7621 SW 87th Ave, Miami, FL 33173
Wild Oats Natural Marketplace
11701 S Dixie Hwy, Miami, FL 33156
Wayside Fruit & Vegetable
10070 SW 57th Ave, Miami, FL
P K Oriental Mart
255 NE 167th St, Miami, FL
Whole Foods Market - Coral Gables
6701 Red Rd, Coral Gables, FL
7301 SW 57th Ave South, Miami, FL
The name of the Flea Market is Bargain Town.. for those that map it:
Bargain Town Flea Market
24400 Packinghouse Rd
Homestead, FL 33032
There was day when lychees were $15 and $18 per pound and that was at farm level!! I had two huge trees in Homestead and the owner of our local Thai restaurant and his family used to come over and pick lychees....and he would give me a couple of bags to freeze for myself....a $100 gift certificate to his restaurant....And I was happy....he was happy....we were all happy.....Memories.....
I got some from Robert is Here last weekend at about $5/lb I believe. They were quite good. They also had another variety there for about twice the price per pound. They were called "black leaf" lychees, I think. I could be wrong about the name. I'd be curious to hear about what might set this one variety apart.
'Hak Ip' means “Black Leaf” in Chinese, and it refers to the dark green to black leaves of this superb variety. The fruit is large, sweet, and always has aborted “chicken tongue” seeds. It is being grown commercially on a small scale, and it is already one of the preferred varieties for the home garden.
The Mauritius lychee fruit is relatively mid sized with a small seed. The color is green & red/pink. The taste is slightly more tart than the other varieties of lychee fruit.
$10/lb for Hak Ip is expensive. I was quoted $5/lb from 2 farmers.
The ones I saw/bought were big/fresh incredibly juicy and sweet. They had just arrived when I bought them. There were no tag/prices posted yet because they had just unloaded them. All braches were cut off so you pay for the actual fruit only which I thought was a pretty good deal. I also spotted them at the Albertsons on Pines Blvd two/three weeks ago and they were $7/lbs but had lots of branches attached.
I went by Robert Is Here on my way to and from Key West this weekend. I tried the black leaf lychees ($6.50/lb) on the way down and the other variety ($4.50/lb, I think) on the way back up. The black leafs were larger and meatier, still quite sweet, bit with a bit of a sour finish, which I kind of liked.
Hiro's Yakko-San had fresh lychees for dessert this weekend, about 8 on ice for ~$6. Delicious.
I'm guessing your neighbor has their tree in the back yard, cause we have a tree in our front yard and people are coming by, taking our fruit, even though they're still a bit green. ANYways. I'd advise people who can find some lychees to buy them now. With all the rain we're getting in Miami, I'm starting to see some lychees bursting open. So the crop for the late season varietys will probably be less causing prices to rise.
Yes lychees are incredible we have 200 lychee trees covered in mauritus and brewsters, we cant wait to pick. Great season, trying to sell our crop as we cant eat so many. ALso put them in the freezer and then its like eating sorbet. We also have about 20 mango trees.
You cant go wrong with Lychees
I found delicious lychees in North Miami Beach- cheap only $2.99 a pound
Chung Hing Oriental Market
1855 N.E. 163rd Street