Thursday, September 20, 2012

Holstein *

This big apple with the bovine name is slightly ribbed with a layered, variegated peel.

Start with yellow-green with streaks of spring green.

Add a thin red blush for an orange-brown effect covering maybe two thirds; put streakey dribs and drabs of more-saturated red inside the blush. There's an O of coppery russet around the base. Light lenticels are barely visible except where russetted over. The shiny peel gives a satiny finish.

The final result is subtle, shimmering and complex rather than vividly colored.

Holstein smells of sweet cider and cold nights and Halloween. It sits firm and heavy in my hand, full of promise.

The flesh is a dense fine-grained white with yellow highlights. Pleasingly firm but not very crisp, it is satisfyingly substantial. Not a modern texture but not hard to like either.

This apple is moderately juicy but richly flavored, sweet flavors backed up with a dollop of tartness. There's pear, cider, cane sugar, citrus (is it lemon or pineapple?), a little spice, and slight vinousness.

The sugar comes on strong at the begining but into the apple some tart acidity asserts itself alongside for a refreshing astringent effect.

My sample had a little bit of water core.

This apple is not challenging to appreciate and in texture and flavor offers some of the pleasures of varieties from days gone by. It's filling for an apple.

Holstein dates from about 1918 in Germany. Many sources give Cox's Orange Pippin as a parent, which is credible. Variant names include Holstein Cox, Holsteiner Cox, etc.

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