Asian pears are also called Nashi pears (Nashi is the Japanese word for pear). They are crisp and juicy and have a sweet and sour flavor. Depending on the variety, the flavor is either more like that of an apple or pear.
From Wikipedia: “Pyrus pyrifolia is a species of pear tree native to East Asia. The tree's edible fruit is known by many names, including: Asian pear, Chinese pear, Korean pear, Japanese pear, Taiwanese pear, and sand pear. Along with cultivars of P. × bretschneideri and P. ussuriensis, the fruit is also called the nashi pear.”
“Cultivars are classified in two groups. Most of the cultivars belong to the Akanashi ('Russet pears') group, and have yellowish-brown rinds. The Aonashi ('Green pears') have yellow-green rinds.”
“The fruits are not generally baked in pies or made into jams because they have a high water content and a crisp, grainy texture, very different from the European varieties. They are commonly served raw and peeled. The fruit tends to be quite large and fragrant, and when carefully wrapped (it has a tendency to bruise because of its juiciness), it can last for several weeks or more in a cold, dry place.c
“In cooking, ground pears are used in vinegar- or soy sauce-based sauces as a sweetener, instead of sugar. They are also used when marinating meat, especially beef. ...”
“Due to their relatively high price and the large size of the fruit of cultivars, the pears tend to be served to guests, given as gifts, or eaten together in a family setting. ...
In Japan, fruit is harvested in Chiba, Ibaraki, Tottori, Fukushima, Tochigi, Nagano, Niigata, Saitama and other prefectures, except Okinawa.”
“In Nepal and the Himalayan states of India, they are called nashpati (नास्पाती) and more popularly known as Mara Sebu in Karnataka, and are cultivated as a cash crop in the Middle Hills between about 1,500 and 2,500 meters’ elevation where the climate is suitable. The fruit are carried to nearby markets by human porters or, increasingly, by truck, but not for long distances because they bruise easily.”