A food writer once called the smell of the durian fruit as “turpentine and onions, garnished with a gym sock.” In Singapore, the fruit is banned on public transportation, hotels, and in many common areas. It’s scent has also been likened to rotting meat and public restrooms.
You’re probably wondering how, then, durian made this list.
It’s simple—durian is considered one of the most delicious fruits on the planet.
Chef and TV host Anthony Bourdain is a huge fan of durian fruit, describing it as “pungent, runny French cheese.” He means this in a good way, of course.
In Southeast Asia, durian is called the “king of fruit,” in part, due to its size and spiky appearance. But beneath that dangerous exterior lies 10 seeds about the size of dates, and around these seeds is a thick, custard-like “meat.”
The taste of this flesh is sweet, almond-like, and extremely creamy, with the texture of a rich cheesecake. It also has a slight smell of alcohol about it, and eating this fruit will make you feel warm—as if you’ve just downed a shot of something strong.
This fruit is, if nothing else, an experience. Bring it to your next party, crack it open, and challenge your friends and family to try it—after all, it’s loaded with healthy fats, potassium, fiber, and iron. Those brave enough to dare will be hooked for life.