Monday, August 3, 2009

What to eat in August

It's still early days for apples, of course, but at least in New England there will be some interesting choices at the markets as early as next week.

I will be on the lookout for four varieties this month.

Lovely Yellow Transparent has, as I said, a surprisingly sophisticated taste for such an early apple. You can start to look for them around August 10.

A week or so later, you might be fortunate enough to find some Zestars. This is a new variety with some unusual flavors (like banana) and a lot of character.

By the 20th or so it is worth seeking out Gravenstein and Red Gravenstein. Get both if you can and see if they taste different to you. The Gravensteins are probably the stars of August, spicy, floral, and well-balanced. They remind me a of Macouns, and if I'm just suggestible that way, why, you can be too if you like.

Also in Mid August don't miss William's Pride, with its full later-season flavor. I always look forward to this handsome variety, which has a pleasantly astringent finish.

There are other good apples available in August--Gingergold certainly rates an honorable mention--but these are my picks.

These varieties have short seasons and none are good keepers, so gather ye rosebuds while ye may.


  1. Don't forget Sansa. And, at least in my part of the country, Akane. At least Akane comes off before Gala.

  2. I tasted the first apple from the tree on my allotment last week. Could possibly do with another week or so, but was still delicious. No idea what variety it is though. I'll have to check through your catalog.

  3. That is flattering, ascorbic, but I think you can do better than to rely on my experience, rooted as it is here in New England (and piecemeal. Though I do think I've got July nailed down, Sansa and Akane probably not grown here.)

    Greger, where do you live? West coast? What are those apples like?

    Last year I sampled every variety I could find here in August, but could have missed a few. Even so there is a pleasing range of tastes this month--compare Lodi with Red Gravenstein or Gingergold.

    I was at Lexington's farmers market today. Still just Jersey Mac and Vista Bella for sale 'round here.

  4. I live in Washington State. Akane is somewhat like Jonathan. Sansa is somewhat like Akane. I would think Sansa and Akane are grown around there by someone. I have been eating Lodi and then Sunrise. Now Gingergold and Zestar! In about a week Sansa and Akane. We are a week late this year.


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