Which salt is best?

How to be the best consumer you can be.
April 26 2005 4:38 AM

Worth One's Salt

From fleur de sel to kosher, which salt is best?

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Serving Suggestions: Surprisingly, Maldon sprinkled on scoops of chocolate Häagen-Dazs ice cream is the perfect desert. Would also be a welcome dusting on any meat or vegetable.

The giant pyramid-shaped flakes of this British sea salt melt slowly on the tongue and provide a satisfyingly crispy crunch. It won big in the finger taste test, where its "extreme texture" had a "gentle flavor." One taster expounded, "Lovely! Looks like dandruff but tastes like food. It's a salty snack on its own." Not coincidentally, Maldon is recognized as a chef's favorite; Vogue food writer Jeffrey Steingarten extols its "lovely square flakes."

According to Maldon, the flakes of this salt are "evaporated in large stainless steel pans, using many of the traditional skills handed down by generations of salt-makers. The salt crystals are hand harvested daily using traditional long handled rakes, a process known as 'drawing the pans.' " The packaging (a simply decorated white box) conjures the fantasy of a country picnic.

It's half the price of a movie ticket in New York City. Shut up and buy this salt.

Dan Crane is a writer and musician living in Los Angeles. He is the author of To Air is Human: One Man's Quest to Become the World's Greatest Air Guitarist.

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