Kesar is a small to medium fruit with a roundish shape and a distinct curved tip. It has a relatively unexciting appearance, having skin that is a dull, slightly mottled yellow colour, perhaps with a green tinge when less mature. Inside it is a different matter: a deep yellow-orange flesh, smooth and fragrant with intense sweetness when they are in peak condition. There can be a slight acid edge to the flavour in less mature fruit, but many people will enjoy this complexity. The medium sized stone has minor fibre attached which does not detract from enjoyment.
Kesar are ready to eat when the fruit is tender with an overall softness coming through the thin peel. Avoid fruit with excessively soft patches or bruised or compressed areas. A little wrinkling of the skin is of no concern, and often means the fruit is at peak eating quality. A Kesar with advanced ripeness may occasionally suffer from ‘sponginess’ of the flesh, which is immediately obvious on cutting the fruit open and can be scooped out and discarded.
Gir Kesar is only grown in Gujarat, India. The Gir Kesar is grown in a specific geographical region around Gir forest in Junagadh and Amreli districts. It is grown in various talukas, such as: Junagadh, Vanthli, Mendarda, Talala, Maliya, Kodinar, Una and Visavadar of Junagadh district, and Dhari and Khambha talukas of Amreli district.