Another harvest is complete. We’ve finished picking the last of the “late” apples in the orchard, that being the Gold Rush and Black Twig Winesap. Both of these varieties are unique in their textures and tastes. Every season has its “stars” and this year the Black Twigs and Gold Rush ran a stiff competition for that title.
The Gold Rush apple is relatively new to the apple growers in this area. Developed in the 1990’s at Purdue University, this apple has the texture of a Golden Delicious but tangy, not sour or tart, just tangy and juicy. It is delicious. Some days at market I enjoyed two or three and am always amazed at the delicious flavor. Another quality of the Gold Rush variety is its long storage capability. Even when the peel is wrinkled, its texture is firm. Last year I peeled a Gold Rush kept in storage for six months and was pleasantly surprised at its quality of flavor and texture.
Black Twig Winesaps are another good storing apple. Shelf life of the Black Twigs can be as long as eight to nine months depending on storage methods. My father always called this a “Christmas Apple” because he remembered receiving one in his Christmas stocking. Developed in a time when refrigeration was not available, this variety mellows in storage and its flavor actually peaks around Christmas. Sweet/tart to taste, it makes a good solid eating variety and also makes tasty pies. It is noted for its aromatic cider making qualities.
Winding down this season, but looking forward to and planning for next year. While still fresh in our minds, this is an excellent time to take an overall assessment of the harvest period and develop new strategies to make things better for our customers. We strive to be good caretakers of our orchard and truly enjoy our “growing” business. Thanks to all for visiting us at the markets. We look forward to serving you again next year.