What a distinctive, unusual apple! I'm posting even though my sample is a bit past prime.
The Pink Pearl's signature pink flesh, marbled with white, is front and center in my first photograph.
Yet even before we look inside, the Pearl is an unusual and handsome fruit, tan yellow largely covered by a glossy pale orange-pink blush.
In this backdrop the many large lenticels resemble nothing other than holes in the blush. Some of the lenticels have dark russet spots.
Pink Pearl's calyx is partly open, and despite being off the tree for two weeks she feels reasonably firm in hand with just a little give.
Nonetheless that marvelous pink flesh shows its age with a noticeable lean towards mealy, though it is still firm and eatable. There is a distinct grapefruit aroma.
The flavors are on the tart side with grapefruit notes (initially grapefruit peel) and also some B-vitamins savor in the second half of the chew. There is also a little watermelon.
In short, unusual tastes accompany the unusual appearance.
The Pink Pearl is one of Albert Etter's marvelous apples, bred in the 1940s. Some sources speculate that Etter's breeding palette for Pearl included the extraordinarily ribbed Calville Blanche d'Hiver.
I had heard that red-fleshed apples were not very good, often mushy, mere novelties. Pearl has a much stronger claim than that.
Incidentally, here is a catalog of many such apples curated by Leicestershire orchardist.
Pearl peaks around late August, and I tasted mine at the end of September. I must find this again in season.
Many thanks to my Santa Cruz friends for these and other apples this fall!