Boletus pinophilus, commonly known as the pine bolete or pinewood king bolete, is a basidiomycete fungus of the genus Boletus found throughout Europe. The large, edible fruiting bodies known as mushrooms appear under pine trees, generally in summer and autumn. It has a matte brown to maroon-coloured cap and its stem is often large and swollen, and the overall colour may have an orange-red tinge. As with other boletes, the size of the fruiting body is variable. Boletus pinophilus is edible, and may be preserved and cooked.
For many years, Boletus pinophilus was considered a subspecies or form of the porcini mushroom B. edulis. In 2008, B. pinophilus in western North America were reclassified as a new species, Boletus rex-veris.
Boletus pinophilus was for many years considered a variety of Boletus edulis, and before that as Boletus pinicola. This species, while no longer treated as a variety of B. edulis, is classified in Boletus section Boletus, and hence, as a close relative of B. edulis. and Ancient Greek philus "loving". and the pinewood king bolete.
In 2008, a taxonomic revision of western North American populations of this species was published, formally establishing it as a distinct species, Boletus rex-veris. Phylogenetic analysis has shown B. pinophilus as a member of a clade, or closely related group, with the North American species B. subcaerulescens, Gastroboletus subalpinus, B. regineus, B. fibrillosus, and B. rex-veris.
Distribution and habitat
In Europe, Boletus pinophilus is found in Britain, It is sold commercially in Finland. preferring the poor, acidic, and sandy soils associated with coniferous forests. It appears to favour Pinus, while the form of the mushroom occurring in association with Abies and Picea has been labeled Boletus pinophilus var. fuscoruber.
The Boletus pinophilus is edible, and may be used fresh, preserved, dried and cooked in a manner similar to that of other edible boletes.
B. pinophilus is known to be a bioaccumulator of the heavy metal mercury. To reduce exposure, authorities recommend avoiding mushrooms from polluted areas such as those near mines, smelters, roadways, incinerators and disposal sites. Furthermore, pores should be removed as they contain the highest concentrations of pollutants.