The story of Volzhenka begins in Astrakhan: an ancient city on the banks of the Volga River. Once a thriving Silk Road trading post and a capital of the Golden Horde, Astrakhan is steeped in a rich history that can be felt to this day. Taking in the green and gold-tipped domes of the Astrakhan Kremlin or walking along the Volga as the Lotus flowers blossom, one senses how the city became globally renowned for its beauty and natural abundance.
Of the diverse array of fish found in the waters of Astrakhan, the sturgeon is the most prized. Sources suggest this precious species was caught in the area as early as the 14th Century – and has been valued for its exceptional taste for just as long. In recent years, researchers have discovered that the first ancestors of the sturgeon appeared around 170 million years ago.
Catching a sturgeon has always been considered good luck. Often reaching enormous sizes, a large sturgeon was enough to feed an entire village – or sold on at a generous profit. The Caspian sturgeon quickly became regarded as an especially fortuitous catch, with ships of the past sailing from the city’s ports laden with their haul. Sturgeons became known as ‘red fish’ on account of the colour’s auspicious symbolism, while Astrakhan and Russia became forever synonymous with world-class fish and caviar.
The people of Astrakhan take great pride in their history as fishermen. Our founder Ekaterina Bataeva is herself an Astrakhan native and a true scion of caviar culture: her maternal grandfather has been harvesting exceptional Beluga caviar from the Volga River for more than fifty years. This legacy and commitment to preserving tradition can be tasted in Volzhenka’s exquisite family-formulated caviar.
Volzhenka is an old Slavic word that describes the women who live on the banks of the Volga, and Volzhenka is very much a woman-led business. Ekaterina runs the Volzhenka brand while her cousin Maria helms the mother company, and our production team is led by top level technologists Marina and Olesya. Above all we are a family business, employing a majority of Astrkahan natives who appreciate the rich caviar culture of our hometown as much as we do.