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The flavor of saffron is enveloping, slightly bitter with a persistent fragrance and a blood red color. (Color of a high-end Saffron).

Saffron is the king of spices with the vanilla queen, our Iranian saffron from the origins is of high quality.

  • Saffron power: 10/10
  • Main notes: Tannic, slightly honeyed and metallic
  • Saffron Category: 1 (Best Saffron Quality)
  • Origin: Sabzevar, in the North-East of Iran

It is here at Comptoir de Toamasina that you will buy the best pistil saffron, neguine saffron. We suggest you buy a saffron of category 1 which will correspond to the best quality of saffron. It is an exceptional saffron that will do wonders in cooking and fine dining.





In our quest for excellence, we are proud to present to you, The Neguine Saffron Pistil is the superior quality of Saffron, we call Category 1 Saffron in French regulations. It is the ultimate in the world of Saffron. A Premium quality Saffron pistil. 

Saffron, often referred to as "red gold", is a precious spice known for its rich flavors and unrivaled aromatic palette. In our Spice Counter , we are committed to providing you with the purest and authentic saffron, while guaranteeing you the best quality-price ratio on the market.

We package it by hand, pistil by pistil.

When you explore our saffron collection, you will not only discover the detailed description of our exceptional flavor, but also essential information on the price of saffron per kilo. We believe in transparency and educating our customers, so you can make informed decisions when purchasing.

Our exclusive offer focuses on the Iranian pearl, a pistil saffron of remarkable quality, classified as grade 1 according to the strictest regulatory standards. Each gram of our pure Neguine saffron is a promise of quality, with exceptional aromatics, an aromatic power that will transform your kitchen, and a captivating note on the palate subtly mixing nuances of honey and metal.

When you cook with our Iranian saffron Neguine pistils, you will find that just a few pistils are enough to flavor your dishes, creating an intense and long-lasting taste experience. Get ready to elevate your culinary recipes to the next level and treat your taste buds to an incomparable sensory journey with our exceptional saffron.

At Comptoir de Toamasina, we invite you to explore a world of flavors, quality and passion for the culinary art. Join us on this unique taste adventure by discovering the pearl of Iranian saffron in Neguine pistils. Elevate your dishes to a new height of delicacy and refinement, thanks to our premium quality saffron.


Pistil saffron, a precious spice, comes from the dried red stigmas of the crocus sativus, a flower of the Iridaceae family, native to Asia Minor. This annual or biennial herbaceous plant is widely cultivated for its valuable spice. Stigmas, also known as pistils, are the female parts of flowers, enclosing the precious seeds. Those of crocus sativus are long, thin structures, usually in red to orange tones, containing pollen grains. When ripe, these stigmas detach from the flowers to be harvested and dried, giving rise to the coveted spice.

Pistil saffron is essentially made up of these dried stigmas, rich in colored pigments and active ingredients which give it its distinct aroma and flavor. Among these active ingredients, we find volatile compounds such as safranic acid, responsible for its bouquet and taste, as well as non-volatile compounds such as crocin.


Why is saffron so expensive? First of all, it is a spice like the vanilla pod which requires a lot of labor . You have to pick each flower by hand and almost the same day. 

Then all the pistils are removed by hand. 

The entire process from its harvest to its preparation will require a lot of human labor, which is why it is so expensive. 


Saffron  is the  pistil  or  stigma  of the  crocus sativus , it is the most expensive spice in the world , the spice that is worth more than gold . The word  saffron  comes from the Persian za'faran which means "yellow".

 The oldest trace of saffron in a book is in a Bible, in the book of songs 4-13 and they will praise its  scent and its taste .

The first  cultivation of saffron  was in Crete in 2000 BC.  

Saffron  and its flower  are a symbol of purity for the Assyrians who will have it harvested only by young virgin girls. It was then the Phoenician traders who marketed saffron throughout the world. 

Historically, the use of saffron  has been varied:  perfume, remedy, aromatic and coloring .

In books from the UFMG library in the medical faculty, we discovered that Hippocrates used saffron as a stimulant, digestive or antispasmodic. 

An Egyptian papyrus dating from 1550 BC states the  health properties of saffron . Physicians such as Hippocrates, Homer and Virgil already knew the stimulating, digestive and antispasmodic virtues of saffron.

Today the European Union  is developing  saffron cultivation  against poppy cultivation (for opium), here is a sustainable development policy. 

To conclude, you have to be careful on Reunion Island, when you hear saffron, we are actually talking about turmeric .


Using saffron in cooking is child's play and can transform an ordinary dish into an exquisite gastronomic experience. Here's how to do it:

  1. Preparation of the infusion  : Lightly heat around 10 cl of water. Add  2 pistils of saffron per person  and leave to infuse for at least  3 hours , or ideally a whole day for lovers of intense flavors.

  2. Integration into dishes  : Saffron lends itself wonderfully to infusion in various preparations such as tagines, paella, bouillabaisse, as well as in soups and vegetables for a touch of color and unique flavor.

  3. Diversity of use  : Don't hesitate to experiment with saffron in your fish dishes or even in desserts to surprise your guests. In Iran, the world's leading producer and exporter of saffron, this precious spice is mainly used to enhance savory dishes. In Switzerland, it delicately flavors brioches.

  4. Traditional use  : Although saffron is traditionally used to flavor rice or enrich the taste of cheese in many countries, you can make meat recipes with it. 


Arnaud Sion, the creator of Comptoir de Toamasina, offers you easy and quick recipes to make with saffron: 

  1. Saffron and Mushroom Risotto:

Ingredients :

  • 300 g arborio rice
  • 1 liter of hot vegetable broth
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 200 g sliced ​​mushrooms
  • 1 dose of saffron (approximately 0.5 g)
  • 100 ml dry white wine
  • 50 g grated parmesan
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish

Preparation : 

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and fry until translucent.

  2. Add the garlic and mushrooms to the pan. Cook until the mushrooms are golden brown.

  3. Add the rice to the pan and stir well to brown it for about 2 minutes.

  4. Pour in the white wine and let it evaporate, stirring constantly.

  5. Dilute the saffron in a small amount of hot water, then add it to the rice.

  6. Gradually add a ladle of hot broth to the rice, stirring constantly. Let the rice absorb the liquid before adding another ladle of broth. Repeat this step until the rice is creamy and cooked al dente.

  7. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the grated parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

  8. Garnish the risotto with chopped fresh parsley before serving hot.

Saffron and Orange Cake:

Ingredients :

  • 200g flour
  • 150 g of sugar
  • 100g melted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • Grated zest of an orange
  • 1 dose of saffron (approximately 0.5 g) diluted in a tablespoon of hot water
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 50 ml of fresh orange juice

Preparation :

  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C and grease a cake mold.
  2. In a bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar until the mixture is frothy.
  3. Add the melted butter, grated orange zest, orange juice and diluted saffron. Mix well.
  4. Add the sifted flour and baking powder to the egg mixture and mix until you have a smooth dough.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Let the cake cool in the pan for a few minutes before turning it out and letting it cool completely on a wire rack.
  8. Optionally sprinkle with icing sugar before serving.


Selling Saffron is an easy thing, but explaining the cultivation and harvesting of crocus is a very complex thing. 

Our job is to help you discover only spices of incredible and purest quality. For an explosion of flavors. 


Saffron, often called the gold of spices, is an essential culinary wonder. Buying saffron from Comptoir de Toamasina means choosing a spice of exceptional quality at a fair price. We offer the best value for money on the market.

Why Iranian Saffron is so Precious

The price of Iranian saffron is higher than gold due to its ancient manufacturing methods and exceptional quality. Our blood red colored saffron is considered the top of the range saffron. Buying saffron online from us guarantees a secure transaction.

Saffron Culture

Saffron cultivation is a demanding but very profitable activity. It is grown in many countries, with Iran and Kashmir leading the world's producers. Ideal conditions for growing saffron include soils that are well-drained, rich in organic matter, and slightly acidic. Planting bulbs is generally done in June-July, with crop rotation necessary to avoid soil exhaustion.

Flowering takes place in the fall, between September and November. It is an intense harvest period where every day the flowers must be picked. A good picker can collect up to 2000 flowers per hour. It takes around 150,000 flowers to obtain 1 kg of dry saffron. The stigmas, the red parts of the flower, are then separated manually and dried before being packaged. The production of saffron is artisanal and manual, thus explaining its high price.

The Saffron Harvest

Saffron is the star of haute cuisine. It grows in well-drained clay-limestone soils exposed to the sun, because it likes burning heat. The harvest takes place in November, where workers delicately harvest the precious flowers. You must then remove the pistils one by one before drying them. On average, it takes 140,000 flowers to produce 1 kg of neguine saffron.

Saffron Production Today

Today, Iran holds the monopoly on global saffron production with more than 85%. Other producing countries include Morocco, Spain, India, Greece, Italy, Azerbaijan and France, where a small production is located next to our Comptoir in the Lille metropolis.


Saffron is a very valuable and expensive spice that must be stored properly to preserve its flavor and color. Here are some tips for storing saffron from chef Arnaud of Apogée bar: 

  • Buy saffron in small quantities to avoid storing it for a long time
  • Store the saffron in a dry place away from light. Use an airtight container to minimize exposure to air and moisture
  • Keep the saffron at room temperature. Avoid storing it in a place that is too hot or too cold, as this can affect its flavor and color
  • Use aluminum foil to wrap your glass jar if there is no UV filter on the jar
  • avoid storing saffron with spices with strong notes
  • Always have a jar with seals that do not allow air to pass through.

With the following methods you will be able to keep saffron for between 12 and 18 months. It is important to note as with vanilla, saffron slowly loses its aroma if it is poorly stored and sometimes even its color.


It is essential to avoid powdered saffron, which is often adulterated and less flavorful. Some unscrupulous sellers mix paprika with saffron powder. Always prefer pistil saffron.

To buy good saffron, learn to recognize the real pistil. The real saffron pistil is blood red in color. The whitish or yellow pistils are of poor quality and offer inferior taste.

Saffron Grades

The quality of saffron is evaluated according to four grades, based on its physicochemical characteristics:

Grade 1:

  • Safranal ≥ 120 mg/g
  • Picrocrocin ≥ 70 mg/g
  • Crocin ≥ 190 mg/g
  • Total ash ≤ 8%
  • Foreign materials ≤ 0.1%

This grade, the noblest, offers an intense flavor, a deep red-orange color and a high concentration of aromatic and coloring compounds. Perfect for fine dining and special occasions.

Grade 2:

  • Safranal ≥ 90 mg/g
  • Picrocrocin ≥ 55 mg/g
  • Crocin ≥ 150 mg/g
  • Total ash ≤ 8%
  • Foreign materials ≤ 0.5%

This grade offers good value for money, with a strong taste and color, ideal for everyday use while being slightly more affordable than grade 1.

Grade 3:

  • Safranal ≥ 70 mg/g
  • Picrocrocin ≥ 40 mg/g
  • Crocin ≥ 110 mg/g
  • Total ash ≤ 8%
  • Foreign materials ≤ 1%

This economical grade is suitable for dishes where saffron is used as a subtle aromatic element, offering a slightly less intense red-orange color than higher grades.

Grade 4:

  • Safranal ≥ 50 mg/g
  • Picrocrocin ≥ 30 mg/g
  • Crocin ≥ 80 mg/g
  • Total ash ≤ 8%
  • Foreign materials ≤ 1%

The most affordable, this grade has a less pronounced flavor and color, often used in spice blends and industrial products.

When purchasing, make sure that the saffron complies with the ISO/TS 3632-2 standard, not exceeding 12% humidity, thus guaranteeing its quality and freshness.

  • Since 2013, Comptoir de Toamasina has purchased only the best grade of Saffron, which is grade 1.

Why is Saffron the Most Expensive Spice in the World?

Saffron is expensive mainly because of the amount of manual labor required to produce it. Each flower must be harvested by hand on the same day, and the pistils are then removed by hand. This labor-intensive process contributes to its high cost.

How to Buy Good Saffron from Iran - The Best Online Store

Smell the Saffron

Saffron should have a characteristic smell, slightly honeyed with an iron touch.

Examine the Pistils

The pistils should be blood red in color, with no yellowish or orange branching. They must be intense red and free of pollen.

Check for Absence of Fogging

The saffron should not fog up in the container, a sign of excessive humidity and risk of mold.

Native country
Crocus sativus
filament saffron
Preparation / Delivery
Preparation within 24 hours - Delivery within 48 hours
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