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5 Boutique Apples to Enjoy this Fall

September 28, 2020

Apple picking has been a treasured autumn tradition of Ohio families for decades. An activity for all ages, one of the most exciting parts about these outings is discovering and falling in love with a new apple variety. Having one of the most diverse apple collections in the area, Quarry Hill in Berlin Heights is one of our favorite Ohio orchards. Read on to learn about 5 boutique apple varieties they grow, each with their unique flavor profile and eating applications.

 

Ambrosia

 A fusion of pink, orange, yellow and red tones, the Ambrosia apple is sweet and floral with low acidity. Medium sized and with a medium crunch, this apple is slow to brown and keeps very well when refrigerated. The Ambrosia apple was discovered in British Columbia in 1987. It is thought to be a hybrid of Golden Delicious and Starking Delicious because these were the apple varieties growing in the vicinity of where it was found.

Premier Application: This apple is just as good cooked as eaten raw. Because the sugar content is already very high, there is no need to add a lot of sugar in dessert recipes when cooking with this apple. Expected mid October

 

 Winesap

Winesap is an heirloom apple, dating back to at least the American Colonial times, although its exact heritage is still unknown. Its firm, dark red exterior compliments a crisp, juicy inside, which makes it both an excellent cooking apple and great for juicing. It’s spicy, wine-like flavor does well in both sweet and savory preparations. Uniquely, the flower blossoms on the Winesap tree are pink, unlike the white of most apple trees.

Premier Application:  This apple makes great muffins, bread and tarts, as well as stuffing for meat dishes and roasted squash. Its juiciness makes it exceptional for cider, sauces and preserves. Expected end of October 

 

 

Gold Rush

The Gold Rush is a medium, yellow-green apple, with a juicy, spicy acidity. It stores well, developing more sugar content as time goes on. In fact, its flavor mellows from very tart to an effervescent, winey taste in about 7 weeks after harvest. This apple was developed at Purdue University through a joint breeding venture between Indiana, Illinois, and New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Stations. It is known for being immune to scab, a common plant disease caused by a fungus.

Premier Application: Gold Rush resists oxidation, making it a superior choice for applesauce and baking. It is also wonderful juiced or in hard cider production. Expected mid November 

 

 Pixie Crunch 

The Pixie Crunch is a smaller, red apple, perfectly sized for snacking. It has a crisp, crunchy texture and a complex, sweet and slightly tart flavor that impeccably balances its sugar to acid content. Bred to be resistant to disease, this apple variety comes from a collaborative research project between Purdue University, Rutgers University, and the University of Illinois. 

Premier Application:It’s juiciness and flavor make it great for eating raw as an on-the-go hand fruit or baking in pies and apple crumbles. Expected late September / early October  

 

 

Evercrisp 

A cross between a Fuji and Honeycrisp, it's no shock that this apple is super sweet in flavor. Firm and juicy, packing a loud crunch, this apple’s skin is blushed rosy red over a cream background. Originating in Indiana, the Evercrisp is a fairly new variety developed by the Midwest Apple Improvement Association. Its name is a tribute to its superb storability, as it maintains its peak freshness for weeks, even without refrigeration.

Premier Application: This apple is very versatile. It is great for snacking, and can also be layered in sandwiches, baked, roasted, mashed, stewed, or juiced. It even pairs well with most meats and cheeses. Expected early November  

 

Whether you’re an astute apple picker, or a first timer, we highly encourage you to get out there this fall and try all the different varieties you can find! Feeling social? Connect with us on social media and share your findings by tagging us @premierproduceone!

 

Learn more about Quarry Hill Orchards by checking out our interview with Brooke Gammie here