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Jul 30, 2013 10:13 AM EDT

NUS Researchers Make Durian Wine


Researchers from the National University of Singapore's Food Science and Technology Program have successfully developed a clear Durian wine with six percent alcohol. The cultivation coincides with the start of this years' Durian season.

The fruit, popularly known as both the 'King of Fruits' and the 'World's Stinkiest Fruit' has been totally banned in public buses and trains in Singapore.

NUS' durian wine is devoid of the fruit's pungent smell. Currently, the team is looking out for commercial partners to sell the beverage.

 "For durian lovers it will be an interesting product to try because they love durian in the first place, like myself. For the non-durian lovers, actually after the fermentation, the pungent smell, the repulsive smell of durian is reduced so actually they will dare to try," said Fransisca Taniasuri, a student involved in the project.

Experts are uncertain about the public's reaction to the fruit. Anthony Bourdain, a prominent food and travel host, loves its rich buttery, creamy flavor and texture.

"Its taste can only be described as...indescribable, something you will either love or despise. ...Your breath will smell as if you'd been French-kissing your dead grandmother," said Bourdain. 

Several chefs and writers said that eating Durian is similar to 'eating custard in a sewer, turpentine and onions garnished with a gym sock, and rotten mushy onions.'

The same team also produced papaya wine as a means to reduce wastage. The fruit gets spoiled quickly due to rapid post-harvest deterioration, high heat, humidity and poor handling.

After five years of research, scientists have developed different papaya wines with 2 to 5 percent alcohol, diverse characteristics and aroma profiles.

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