Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Apples in a starring role

Since I started rating apples in 2012, I’ve set aside the start of February to assess varieties tasted during the previous year. This just works better for me than rating the apples as I go.

D'Arcy Spice apple
D'Arcy Spice is worth seeking.
Seventeen of the twenty-two apples I reviewed in 2015 are getting stars this year.

In my qualitative rating scheme, one star (*) simply denotes an apple that is “worth choosing.” For 2015 welcome Cornish Aromatic, Epicure, Eureka Canyon, Kanzi, Katherine, Koru, Peace Garden, Pink Parfait, Red Astrakhan, Rockit, Spymac, Suntan, Vanilla Pippin, Waltana, and Williams.

I just love the names of some of those apples, don't you?

I had the pleasure last year of sampling two varieties that I judge to be “worth seeking.” That is the meaning of two stars (**), and the apples are Allen’s Everlasting and D’Arcy Spice, from Ireland and England respectively.

Unfortunately a search for Allen’s and D'Arcy, though worthwhile, may not be easily requited; these heritage apples are not common.

There were no new three-star apples (***) this year.

The presence of several Albert Etter apples reflects my trip to California last October.

My samples were thin in 2015, and I relied in many cases on a single apple that was sometimes flawed or not at peak. Consequently many of the one- and no-star apples may deserve a higher rank. (I’m pretty certain of it, actually.)

I just can’t say for sure. Still this is a useful reminder that all of my ratings are, in principle, provisional pending further data. I'd love to resample these someday.

A no-star apple may still be well worth eating, also tastes vary and mine are not more “correct” than yours.  Follow yours, form your own opinions, and, if you like, share them on my blog in the comments for the apples in question

1 comment:

  1. My white nectarine, that has given me ambrosial fruit in previous seasons, gave me virtually inedible fruit this year. That would be because of an error with how I fed it. Taste depends on mire than just the variety, for sure.

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