Thursday, August 14, 2008

Paula Red *

I was out of town on Wednesday, but today scored some Paula Reds at Belmont's farmers market.

Paula Red is a medium-sized apple that is mostly red, though with green streaks and small light speckles. Skin is more matte than glossy.

The fruit is slightly ribbed and where the red fails the underlying color is a spring green that is bright and saturated. (In fact it looks like that of a Vista Bella.)

I have had some Paula Reds that were not very interesting, but these are the most McIntosh-like apples of the summer so far. Crisp and a tart, with spice notes and assertive acidity.

The flesh is white shot with green, and when bitten calves into satisfying chunks. There's some lingering acidity and astringency in the finish, and a hint of strawberries.

Paula Red's skin is not thick and the apple seems to bruise more easily than some. It eats very fine and I wish I'd gotten a few more.

The Belmont market is right downtown and features some of the same growers as Arlington's with others.

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