I was first introduced to the Black Thorn on Sunday by my friend Denise who’d sampled it the day before. “You must try it,” Denise said to me over dinner. Thus, instead of having the usual dessert and tea at JW Marriott Hotel, we head up to meet our friends from Kuching. When we reached the famous SS 2 durian stalls, we were told there isn’t any Black Thorn available so Denise suggested that we try our luck at Durian King, located at the TTDI market’s car park.
|The so called thorn that made Black Thorn distinctive. I call it a tail.|
Durian King sold out that day’s Black Thorn supply but for consolation, we were treated to cendol with Black Thorn’s toppings. On Tuesday night, I went back to Durian King again with another friend, this one from Sabah. We are lucky that there are still three Black Thorn left, two of which we took. Not too long after we were seated, more and more customers arrived and everyone was asking about Black Thorn.
What is a Block Thorn durian? When Denise told me about a single tiny thorn that is black at the bottom of the durian, I joked that the durian sellers could be dyeing the thorn black as marketing gimmick. When I finally saw the “thorn”; it is not really a thorn but sort of a special birthmark tail for this durian in dark brown color. Its texture and taste are more or less the same as the famous Musang King. Some quarter claimed that it is not as rich so you won’t feel stuffed after having them but I think it is the same too.
Black Thorn is a connoisseur’s durian, claimed a durian seller as published by The Star but I still think it is just another marketing gimmick because this durian costs more per kg than the Musang King, the king of the king of fruits. What that can’t be disputed is that Black Thorn is rare while one can get Musang King everywhere. A kilogram of Black Thorn costs RM 45.00 at Durian King while Musang King only costs RM 35.00.
After finishing two Black Thorns on Tuesday, I can’t help to be thinking that all the brouhaha about Black Thorn are just marketing gimmick and a way for durian sellers to sell something more expensive to increase their revenue as the price of all other durian plummet this year, very much in part due to belt tightening post GST and a strong harvest. Black Thorn for you? Give it a try as nothing beats the experience. And it won’t be long before a new type of durian arrives in the market given that never ending innovation is part and parcel of the world’s existence.