Perfect balance of sweet & tart
The Gravenstein Apple
The Gravenstein apple has achieved worldwide recognition as an apple with superior flavor. Culinary uses are very diverse. Not only is the Gravenstein apple wonderfully crisp and flavorful straight from the tree, but these qualities are not lost through the cooking process but rather captured and enhanced. Many people believe Gravenstein apple juice, cider and apple sauce are incomparable to other varieties for this reason.
In 1820 the first West Coast Gravenstein orchard was planted by Russian fur traders at their outpost in Fort Ross. The trees survived the intense coastal weather. Soon afterward, orchards began cropping up in neighboring towns with a concentration of trees thriving in the sandy loam soil of Sebastopol.
The Gala was developed in New Zealand by J.H. Kidd, crossing Golden Delicious and his own Kidd’s Orange Red. The flesh of the apple is crisp and thick, with a mild sweet flavor. The Gala is often used in cider blends. Galas are a great apple for eating out of hand and drying but they are not the most flavorful for baking. They will keep well in the refrigerator for about three months.
The Jonathan varies in flavor from mild to tart, but it also has a spicy tang. The flesh of this apple is crisp and juicy. The Jonathan is a good apple for both cider and for eating out of hand. The apple does not keep very well but it is a good apple for cider or sauce because of its unique spicy character.
This apple works well in pies and sauce with little or no sugar. The mellow, juicy and sweet character of the Golden Delicious makes it a good apple for cider. This later varietal ripens from mid-September through late October. Skin that is darker yellow signals over ripeness.
This variety is a real supermarket success because it holds up well in shipping and has about a six month shelf life if refrigerated. This well-rounded apple is good for baking, sauce and juice and although people will eat it fresh, it’s not as popular as some of the other varietals. Although the Granny is tart, it’s not necessarily sour and some of the paler green ones will have a little sweetness.
The Fuji was developed from American parents, Ralls Janet and Red Delicious. The cream-colored, firm, fine-grained flesh is juicy and sweet. It’s an American favorite ranking well in taste tests especially among late-maturing varieties. This apple is harvested from September through early November. Fuji’s have an amazing shelf life. They can be kept in the refrigerator for about one year before they will begin to spoil.
The Rome apple is almost unfailingly crisp; it’s rarely mealy. The skin is dark red, leaving a pink tinge around the creamy flesh when you bite into one. The skin also often has texture — slightly rough raised white speckles. The Rome apple is crunchy enough for satisfying eating and not too sweet.