UMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar | Caviar inspired by Asian influences


  • UMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar - credits Kris HosseyUMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar - credits Kris Hossey
  • UMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar - credits Jurgen Lijcops PhotographyUMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar - credits Jurgen Lijcops Photography
  • UMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar - credits Jurgen Lijcops PhotographyUMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar - credits Jurgen Lijcops Photography

Imperial Heritage Caviar, the premium caviar house in Belgium and favorite of many celebrity chefs, launches their newest addition: UMI. Elisabeth Colman, new generation of the Colman family, owners of Imperial Heritage Caviar, was stimulated by the Asian influences in our modern cuisine during the company’s constant search for innovative flavours. They developed a brand new caviar with a surprisingly different pearl. The new caviar is called UMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar (‘Umi’= ‘sea’ in Japanese) and will be available exclusively in a selection of fine dining restaurants. UMI will also have two ambassadors: restaurant Cuchara** and restaurant DIM Dining.

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Top Belgian Caviar house Imperial Heritage Caviar launches brand new caviar UMI

It is Koenraad Colman and his wife Kristel Berghmans who founded Imperial Heritage Caviar in 2012, but it is daughter Elisabeth Colman who, fascinated by Japanese flavours, developed this new caviar. UMI has a younger maturation, but comes from a more mature white sturgeon which results in large and firm pearls. This caviar is distinguished by its subtle flavour and defined elegance with salty notes from the sea. The fresh saltiness turns into a soft and rich taste, which is perfectly balanced with the Asian influences in our modern cuisine.

Japanese-inspired ambassadors for UMI by Imperial Heritage Caviar | DIM Dining and Cuchara**

Restaurant DIM Dining and restaurant Cuchara(**), both known for their love of Japanese cuisine, were named ambassadors for UMI. This translates into a series of sublime dishes in perfect harmony with the fresh saltiness and creamy flavors of UMI.

Imperial Heritage Caviar and the Colman family

Imperial Heritage Caviar was born when Koenraad Colman and his wife Kristel Berghmans went in search of the typical caviar taste of the past. As big caviar lovers, they noticed that after the year 2000, the taste of caviar started to change more and more. In fact, the catch and sale of wild sturgeon caviar was curbed in 1998, resulting in a complete ban on catching wild sturgeon in 2011. Out of passion for the product, they started their search for a sustainably produced caviar that matched the traditional taste of wild sturgeon caviar. Together with their daughter Elisabeth Colman, the family built an internationally acclaimed caviar house, their caviar is used and loved by among others the culinary top in the BeNeLux, South Africa, Dubai and Saint Barthélemy.

Meanwhile, Imperial Heritage works with farms in northern Italy, where the sturgeons can live in an ecosystem with fresh running water and natural soil in a stress-free habitat. The soil there allows the fish to partially search for food themselves among the boulders and stones. After all, the terroir of the sturgeon greatly influences the taste of the caviar.

A new generation | Elisabeth Colman

Daughter Elisabeth Colman stepped into the business 5 years ago and provides top service and customized caviar for star chefs including Viki Geunes, Sergio Herman, Filip Claeys, Ralf Berendsen, Michaël Vrijmoed, Thierry Theys, Thijs Vervloet and Pascal Devalkeneer, each of whom serves their own selection of Imperial Heritage Caviar. “Sustainability is hugely important to us. Our sturgeons grow up all their lives in the open air. As a result, they live completely according to the seasons as they would in the wild. We always work very purely,” said Elisabeth Colman, executive director of sales at Imperial Heritage Caviar.

Caviar for celebrity chefs

The end result of the natural farming process translates into hugely refined caviar, praised by top chefs. “There is perfect control over the entire life cycle of the fish and this reflects in the purity of the product. That conscious attention to the production process is why I love working with Imperial Heritage,” says Viki Geunes from restaurant Salty (***).

Authentic caviar masters

Not only environment, but also processing and packaging have an impact on the taste of caviar. The eggs are washed, sieved, and filtered immediately after harvest. Then the caviar is salted and packed in large tins of 500g to 1.8kg, in which the caviar eggs can rest and mature.

Imperial Heritage Caviar works with specialized caviar masters, who always make the first selection immediately after the harvest and salting. Then the Colmans fly to Italy for the second selection, when the caviar has already matured for several months in its original mother tin. Imperial Heritage Caviar is very lightly salted, and is functional only for maturation and preservation. The saltiness in this caviar is otherwise pure nature. Imperial Heritage Caviar is for sale at:

Sevruga, Antwerp | De Vis, Ghent | ‘t Vissershuys, Kortrijk | Depaepe, Knokke-Heist | Slagerij Dewitte, Knokke-Heist | Vis&Co, Lommel | Butcher’s Store, Hove | Or via their website.

We wrote about different kind of caviar, like the snail caviar and citrus caviar. 

Website: Imperial Heritage Caviar

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