Fresh Durian, Mekong Delta, Vietnam
Durian is the fruit of a tree belonging to the Durio genus in the Malvaceae family. Native to the island of Borneo, it is cultivated in tropical areas with a mean daily temperature above 22 °C. Its name comes from the Malay duri, meaning "thorn". Thailand is the leading producer, followed by Malaysia and Indonesia. Chantaburi hosts the annual World Durian Festival.
Despite the notoriety of durian's smell which has seen it banned from public buildings and transportation, different species can have significantly different aromas. The smell of this variety, while distinct, was not overpowering. Ripeness also affects flavour and aroma, with people in different countries having different preferences. This durian was soft and aromatic, reminiscent of custard and almonds, with a rich, creamy texture. (Brian K. Smith photo.)
Interested in learning more about the Mekong delta? Read Rick Green's articles, Beyond the Nine Dragons Revisited for the First Time and The King Needs Deodorant. If you've visited this part of Vietnam, we'd love to hear about your experiences. Become an Adventurocity community member and share them on our message boards.