A mango lover and gardening expert weighs in on the fruit of
Co-founder of My Sunny Balcony, Sriram Aravumudan’s family home stands amidst an heirloom mango plantation, originally part of the property that belonged to the Wodeyars of the erstwhile State of Mysore. “I’m thankful to my great grandfather for not chopping off those invaluable trees,” he begins. “Everyone loves Alphonsos, but my favourite is the Raspuri, which gives off a subtle floral flavour,” shares Aravumudan. The Sakkarepatna, he says has an extremely fibrous, sweet character — often used in curries. The Mallika, a newer hybrid that’s already hit the stores is also his personal favourite, with its striking pineapple-y aftertaste. “The Omelette, a cross between a Malgova and Banganpally, named due its large, flat appearance is also slowly gaining popularity,” he concludes. From Goa, Vivek Menezes, co-curator of the Goa Arts and Literature Festival, picks the
Mankurad and Hilario as his favourites. We round up the varieties currently in the market.
From the Thathachariar Gardens — a family-run farm in Thiruchirapally, the exotic Imam Pasand is slightly sour when you first bite into it and then graduates to a buttery sweet flavour and leaves a tropical aftertaste of citrussy, coconutty notes. Vikram Doctor romances the fruit. “When you first bite into it, there’s a sourness that makes you think you’ve made a mistake. But then you realise it’s really a citrusy tang that adds a zest to the sweetness,” he says. Log on to townessentials.com to get them delivered home. Rs 186 per kilo.
From Aphrodite’s Orchard, a farm in Shimoga come a selection of
hand-picked mangoes with varieties including Dassehri (a non fibrous variant from Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh), Alphonso, Mallika and Raspuri. While the mangoes are delivered partially raw to ensure the buyers watch them naturally ripen, they do use a certain amount of pesticides and fungicides during flowering. Rs 300 up for five kilos. Details: 9481776280
If the idea of picking your own mangoes appeals to you, we suggest to head to the Gandhi Krishi Vigyana Kendra (GKVK) Campus on Bangalore-Hyderabad National Highway No. 7. With 200 acres of mango plantations, varieties available include Alphonsos, Dussehri and Langra. Of these, the Langra is the most rare in South India, known for its super sweet, fibreless pulp. They are not chemically ripened. Rs 80
up. Details: uasbangalore.edu.in
Jaivik Krishik Society
Currently available at their stores are completely organic Raspuri and Alphonso mangoes, sourced from Balmuri Farms, which is located close to Mysore. Still raw, they will need about four days to ripen, which you can rest assured will be done through organic methods like placing them in rice boxes. Rs 80 upwards. At Lalbagh Botanical Gardens, Double Road. Details: 26577323
For more unusual varieties like Himsagar, Kalapad, Neelam, Mallika, Rumani and Sindura, head to Food Hall. While not fully organic, they are free from chemical residues. They also have a small selection of organic Alphonsoes, which will set you back by Rs 1,000 for seven. At Trinity Circle. Details: 22086533
— Rashmi Rajagopal