After dim sum today, I popped into the Cupertino 99 Ranch and saw a dwindling supply of Mexican lychees for $3.49 a pound. They looked rather small, some red, some brown and no green. I didn't have a great experience last year with lychees from Mexico (big pits, not much sweetness), so I passed.
Besides Ranch, Marina or driving up to the city, where else could I nab some good lychees?
Mom grabbed a bag from the other Cupertino 99 Ranch. These were reportedly from China. Mostly a mix of brown and red.
A pretty inconsistent batch, as if the lychees came from 2 different cultivars.
- Somewhat sweet, smaller pit.
- Sour, large pit. (kinda like the Mexican-grown ones last year)
Hopefully the next batch won't be as inconsistent.
I did a quick glance at a few stands on Stockton St in Chinatown this week while shopping for other things. Not as much variety as in the past, I didn't see any that looked promising enough to buy.
got some lychee is s.f. chinatown today, price ranged from 2.39 to 2.99. all markets had the same lychee with the reddish, greenish shell. didn't note case markings.
lychee average size, meat firm, slightly sweet flavor. didn't taste as sweet as taiwan ones from years past.
I saw some very large and bright red ones marked from Hawaii for about $9 per pound on Clement St yesterday. This is the produce store in between Wing Lee and Schubert Bakery. I didn't stop to buy any to see how good they are. But I wanted to mention it in case they're available elsewhere.
re: Melanie Wong
Oakland Chinatown regularly sells lychees from Mexico for ~$2 a pound; they are OK. Once in a blue moon I'd see Hawaiian lychees at three times that price. When I first tried them I was shocked at how good they were, easily the best out of China. $9/pound is a very steep price though. I bet even Whole Foods doesn't have a fruit or veggie at that price. ;-)