Friday, December 8, 2017

Evercrisp *

I didn't think I'd get a crack at Evercrisp, a ballyhooed Honeycrisp successor, for several more years. But today I have two.

This handsome apple's blush, a dull red only a bit brighter and more orange than brick, covers spring green. There's a little brown in the red. The lenticel dots are bold and mingle with small patches and streaks of russet.

The apples are large, classically shaped though a little blocky, and moderately ribbed. They are rock hard and bear no aroma at all.

Inside, coarse yellow flesh brings an explosive crunch, a ton of sweetness, and a boatload of juice.

Evercrisp is a Honeycrisp x Fuji cross, and does not fall far from the tree. There's a flowers-and-honey note afloat in the corn-syrup sweetness that is original.

Beyond that, however, flavors are scarce. As with Honeycrisp, its not clear if the saccharine tsunami obliterates more-delicate taste notes or if there are just none to begin with.

The crunch, breaking and bursting with juice, is Evercrisp's most winning feature. It evokes Honeycrisp (though slightly firmer). There's no doubt that is the idea.

Nonetheless, in aping Honeycrisp's extreme taste-effacing sugar, I can't help but wonder if Evercrisp does not miss the point, and the boat.

In the last five or ten years there has been a distinct trend towards flavor in new varieties, mirroring perhaps the growing interest in tasty heritage apples.

New apples like Koru, Opal, SweeTango, and Rockit are crisp and sweet, but also bring interesting flavors to the table, such as malt, carrot, and clove.

In that light, Evercrisp feels like a throwback to the less-sophisticated 1990s, when all consumers asked for was sugar, crunch, and juice.

Evercrisp is a project of the Midwest Apple Improvement Association, a trade group of growers.

The group eschews the newfangled apple club business model (basically, a kind of cartel) in favor of a simple license that any grower can buy.

It's another retro moment for this apple. I wish them well.



  1. This is a late season winner in the Hudson Valley. The fruit is rock hard, very dense, proving to be a long term cold storage keeper, not requiring CA. Over time I find its flavor composition improves, not so overwhelmed with Honeycrisp. My kids really enjoy the first bite which seems to be driving many new varieties. And as you mentioned this varieties increased move of new varieties toward increased complexity of flavor....btw, love your blog. best, Peter

  2. Hello Peter, thank you for the complement! I should think Honeycrisp fans will be grateful to have this in late fall and beyond, when the HCs are off peak.

    Don't you think that Evercrisp is about what one would expect from crossing HC with Fuji?

  3. I bought some of these at the Somerville winter farmers' market from Apex last saturday, about an hour after reading your review. They do taste like what you would expect from Honeycrisp x Fuji!

    I think they have more flavor than HC, but were not as explosively crisp. The ones I bought had a little watercore and were extremely sweet. Broke out the refractometer and measured 20 brix.

    I actually found the sugar overpowering after a few bites. I've eaten high sugar apples that I liked, but they have more acid and other things going on to balance the sugar. These were kind of like eating candy. My kids loved them.

    While neither this one or Honeycrisp are at the very top of my list, I can't deny that it is quite a good apple. I'd certainly eat it again.

    1. They are awfully sweet. To some that is the point, but they are not for everyone.

      I really ought to do a head-to-head with Honeycrisp, but it seems unfair since H is past prime by the time E is ready to eat.


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