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These pears aren't even remotely the most interesting things you can find at PNA Oriental Store in Lincoln Square. The tiny Thai grocery and video store is packed to the gills with dry noodles, canned curries, and bottled sauces. But more importantly there's always a wide and varied selection of fresh sweets, snacks, curries, salads, and soups in the refrigerator cases, prepared for Thai palates (i.e., flavors not tamed for non-Thais), the likes of which you'll never see in your standard Ameri-Thai noodle joint.
These tiny pears, however, are as simple as it gets. I don't know whether there's a strong pickling culture in Thailand, but these fruit have been steeped in nothing more exotic than sugar, salt, and citric acid. Coupled with a sprinkling of Mexican chile salt, they make a fine snack to accompany your beverage of choice, say, an ice-cold beer.
PNA Oriental Store, 2310 W. Leland, 773-784-1797