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Market Watch: A bumper crop of matsutakes
Aromatic matsutakes, a seasonal delicacy prized by the Japanese, rank among the elite of true wild mushrooms — along with porcini, morels and chanterelles — but are generally less available and less well known at farmers markets. Part of the reason is that although appreciation of matsutakes is deeply ingrained in Japanese culture, production of these mushrooms, which must be foraged from the wild, has plummeted over the last century in that nation, which now imports most of its supplies from other lands such as China, Korea and the United States, pushing up prices. But there's a bumper West Coast crop this year, and last week David West, mushroom purveyor extraordinaire, started receiving shipments from the mountains near the California- Oregon border.
By David Karp, Special to the Los Angeles Times
October 1, 2010