• close family • small boat • big world •

The Worst Fruit in the World

July 17, 2014

by Greg
At anchor at Georgetown, Great Exuma, Bahamas

...is without question the noni fruit.  I feel confident in stating this despite not having tasted all other fruits in the world.

I actually had taste nightmares after eating this fruit.   I woke up several times that night with the horrible memory of its taste in my mouth and in my brain.

This started as we were walking around Little Farmers Cay.  We were talking to a local about all the things he was growing - papaya, peppers, herbs, and the noni fruit. I like trying new things, so I had to taste it.

The noni fruit ruined cheese for me for several days after I tasted it, and it probably ruined moldy cheese (the good kind) for me for weeks or months (not that I get to eat much of that out here anyway). Which brings me to the taste.
Denzel climbing down after harvesting a papaya
My first impression was of very old, moldy cheese. Take the moldy part of the flavor of any moldy cheese, amp it by 1000, and there you have the beginning of the taste of noni fruit.  But there's more. There was a harsh burn and a developing spectrum of other flavors that seemed familiar... aah..., got it: vomit. Perfect. Hyper-moldy cheese and vomit - complete with the burn - and overpowering in its intensity.

Bahamians consider this a medicinal fruit, eating it when they are sick. They say that if it tastes bad to you, you don't need it.  Based on that, I am one healthy dude, and I plan never again to taste it unless I am so sick as to be unconscious.

I do have a theory about it's medicinal powers though. There's a saying about severe seasickness - that the only thing that keeps you alive is the hope of dying. I am thinking that the health benefits of the noni fruit might work along similar lines.