Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Two apple treasures


Apple number one is this big guy, 25 feet tall if he's an inch. (That's a bicycle at lower left.)

Is there anyplace quite like New England in the fall?

Clarkdale Fruit Farm, a friendly, pretty place just south of Greenfield, Massachusetts, was a highlight of my family's recent trip to the Pioneer Valley and the Mohawk Trail.

Clarkdale grows some unusual apples, but the big surprise was little Davey here. (Read my review to learn why this is pronounced "davvee.")

This part of New England boasts some mighty orchards, and I barely scratched the surface.

Still I am surprised (pleasantly!) to find Davey for sale anywhere.

This apple is conserved at the antique orchard maintained by the Worcester County Horticultural Society at its facility in Boylston. (It is the only 20th Century variety in the orchard; read my review to learn why.)

Once a year, on Columbus Day weekend, the Society leads tasting walks through the orchard, and this year (last week) a docent remarked that he was not sure if anyone grew Davey anyplace else.

Well, seek no further. It's a very fine apple and we bought a bag.

Davey is part of the McIntosh family has has the berries-and-grapes qualities of its bloodlines.

In addition, I noticed a mild pear flavor in the mix this year, something that was absent (or that I missed) when I ate my lone reviewing sample two years ago.

A first-rate apple, and a brilliant orchard.

Clarkdale also grows a diverse collection of pears.

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