HOME > Chowhound > Washington DC & Baltimore >
Do you create unique foods?

Where are the Apples?

daves_32 Sep 19, 2007 07:21 AM

Does anyone know where I could get some Honey Crisp Apples or Empire Apples here in the area? I bought a few Honey Crisp at the Penn Quarter Fresh Farm Market last Thursday but they were a little under ripe i thought (may be because of the dry summer). Does anyone have any suggestions where I could get the Honey Crisp or Empire?

  1. monavano Sep 19, 2007 07:27 AM

    Whie not the specific varieties you mentioned above, Allenberg Orchards has amazing apples (well, amazing anything they grow). Check them out at the Kingstowne market too.



    1. j
      Jeserf Sep 19, 2007 07:39 AM

      go pick your own!
      homestead farms is close by!

      1. h
        Hal Laurent Sep 19, 2007 07:40 AM

        If you get desperate enough to head up to Baltimore, Reid's Orchards has had both of those at the Sunday farmers market in Baltimore for a couple of weeks now. I believe they sell at the Saturday farmers market in Waverly (Baltimore) as well.

        1. c
          cookiegirl Sep 19, 2007 09:29 AM

          Several vendors at the Courthouse market had Honey Crisps last Saturday. The ones I bought from Twin Springs Farm are fantastic. I'm pretty sure I saw Empires there as well.

          1 Reply
          1. re: cookiegirl
            katecm Sep 19, 2007 02:39 PM

            Twin Springs had some amazing ones two weeks ago. I'm hoping they'll have more this weekend. They're an early apple, and I'm so sad when they're gone.

          2. n
            nickdanger Sep 19, 2007 09:38 AM

            You might find some at Grand Mart, Lotte, etc.

            1. e
              Elyssa Sep 19, 2007 09:58 AM

              Dupont Circle Farmer's Market usually have lots of varieties of apples. I bought mine there all last fall and they were delicious. I wasn't there last Sunday so I'm not sure what varieties they have, but I'm looking forward to seeing all the apples, apples cider, and apple butter out at the market.

              Also, if anyone sees people selling apple cider donus (warmed even better) at any of the markets please let me know. These are a particular treat from my childhood growing up in New England but I haven't been able to find any in DC last year at the market.

              16 Replies
              1. re: Elyssa
                Just Visiting Sep 19, 2007 11:44 AM

                I know everyone here hates WFM except me but we got some phenomenally good, locally grown Honey Crisps and Ginger Golds at Fair Lakes this past weekend. I was actually not expecting much - just hankering for good apples (the same way I hanker for good berries in the spring and never believe I could ever get enough berries, but by the end of the summer, I am berried out and looking forward to good apples). So I bought a few and they were fantastic. Eagerly awaiting the Cameos. So for those of you who don't have time to run around to multiple grocery stores and farmers' markets, don't be so negative about WFM - you can definitely get good, locally grown produce there.

                1. re: Just Visiting
                  Elyssa Sep 19, 2007 01:06 PM

                  WFM? Is this Whole Foods?

                  1. re: Elyssa
                    Just Visiting Sep 19, 2007 04:00 PM

                    Yes, WFM = Whole Foods Markets.

                    1. re: Just Visiting
                      Raids Sep 22, 2010 09:53 AM

                      I was going to say that the honey crisps at Whole Foods have always been really great also.

                      (And also, hundreds of people making special trips for apples probably adds up to a lot of distance for one truck....but, hey, I go to the Dupont and White House farmer's markets too just because the food is really, really good and I can walk or take less than two metro stops)

                  2. re: Just Visiting
                    Jeserf Sep 20, 2007 06:30 AM

                    I very, very rarely see truly local produce at my whole foods.
                    I rely on the farmers markets (baltimore or dupont) for produce....

                    1. re: Jeserf
                      Just Visiting Sep 25, 2007 03:22 PM

                      I don't know how you define local. There's no official definition that I know of. The Whole Foods Market in Fair Lakes has a Farmer's Market in its parking lot on Sundays, featuring local produce, but I"ve never stopped to see if it is more local than the local produce they've got in the stores. The Whole Foods Market standard, per their website, is "traveled less than 7 hours." Given the need for a supermarket to have a reliable, large supply of produce, it isn't surprising (or unreasonable IMHO) that their standard would be a little looser than a once-a-week farmer's market where people buy whatever happens to be available and when it's gone, it's gone. People go to farmer's markets with a different attitude. If something is not available at the supermarket, they get ticked off. If it isn't available at a farmer's market, that's life.

                      I think 100 miles is otherwise a fairly common standard. The CH Balto-DC region is a geographically BIG area - so "local" to someone in Springfield will be very different to someone in Towson, regardless of the distance you consider an appropriate standard for "local." And I've looked at the source of the produce at the Dupont Circle Farmer's Market - some of it is a good 100 miles or more distant from the market.

                      Anyway, today the Whole Foods Market in Fair Lakes had LG apples (at least three varieties), corn, melon, several kinds of peppers, tomatoes including Roma and several kinds of heirlooms, and a few other items but I'm remembering only what I bought.

                      Some of the local farmers from whom Whole Foods Market purchases are listed on the website here: http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/produ...

                      I know a lot of the stuff - including melons and apples - I've been seeing in Fair Lakes is coming from a farm in Shippensburg, PA - not on the website list. I think it may be Toigo Orchards. I spoke to the greengrocer last week and he said that many of the peppers and tomatoes were coming from a farm very close to the store but I don't recall exactly where he said it was.

                      1. re: Just Visiting
                        Just Visiting Sep 26, 2007 07:30 AM

                        Sorry to be less than clear. I used LG as an abbreviation for Locally Grown, which I thought would have been clear from the context, which was a post about locally grown produce. My biggest problem with buying locally grown is time. I just don't have the time to make multiple trips to multiple places.

                        1. re: Just Visiting
                          Manassas64 Sep 12, 2010 01:37 PM

                          I will say that the FL WFM had plums and donut peaches from a farm that I think was in PA and started with a T and they were FAB U LOUS. I was going twice a week to get them.

                    2. re: Elyssa
                      nickdanger Sep 20, 2007 10:31 AM

                      If you are in the mood for a (car) ride, the Apple House in Linden, VA, exit off of 66 before Front Royal, has fresh home made cider donuts, made using an old-fashioned donut machine/fryer. Worth the trip.

                      1. re: nickdanger
                        Elyssa Sep 20, 2007 10:39 AM

                        Oooooooooo! Worth it to rent a Zipcar for? I imagine there are other things at the Apple House? Is it attached a farm for picking or anything? I know nothing about VA really and have never even heard of Linden. (As I've said in the past, I don't get out of the city much since I don't have a car)

                        1. re: Elyssa
                          baconjen Sep 21, 2007 10:41 AM

                          Elyssa, you owe it to yourself to find a beautiful fall day and get out to Linden. The Apple House has all kinds of kitschy stuff, if I'm remembering the same place. Not only is the Apple House good for donuts and lunch, but it is really close to Linden vineyard which is one of the prettiest vineyards with the some of the best wines in Virginia. There is a great picnic area or a place you can get yummy snacks and cheeses at the winery. Very nice white wines, pretty scenery - one of my favorite fall excursions. Website is http://www.lindenvineyards.com

                          1. re: baconjen
                            Bob W Sep 25, 2007 04:03 PM

                            The Apple House is right near Hartland and Stribling Orchards, which are both pick-your-own. We'll be heading out to apple country soon!

                            1. re: Bob W
                              freddee Oct 12, 2007 05:57 PM

                              Good to know about the Apple House. We always go to Hartland and Stribling the third weekend of October but were unaware of the Apple House. We miss the cider house donuts we used to get at the Franklin Cider Mill in our hometown of Detroit and look forward to checking these out.

                              1. re: freddee
                                GailC Sep 22, 2010 03:33 PM

                                I loved going to Franklin Cider Mill as a kid.

                            2. re: baconjen
                              alkapal Oct 14, 2007 12:43 AM

                              the linden trip looks so inviting. thanks for the information.

                              1. re: alkapal
                                Manassas64 Sep 12, 2010 01:24 PM

                                Oh I love the Apple House. It's so much fun.

                      2. b
                        baconjen Sep 19, 2007 02:10 PM

                        Okay, I know everyone is going to laugh, but I just got some delicious Honey Crisp Apples at my Giant (Huntsman Giant off Fairfax County Parkway). There was a guy handing out cut-up samples and they were absolutely delicious. I was completely baffled because Giant usually has pretty limited and yucky produce. Go figure.

                        1. d
                          dcish Sep 19, 2007 02:38 PM

                          I got some great ones in Dupont. but another source might be Wegmans. I think they source well from their central/western new york roots.

                          1. JonParker Sep 19, 2007 06:16 PM

                            Wegmans is really my go-to place for produce. They're really good about having what's in season, fresh and often from local producers. I get just about everything, with the exception of tomatoes there.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: JonParker
                              Manassas64 Sep 12, 2010 01:24 PM

                              I agree. The Wegmans in Lake Manassas (Gainesville) has Honey Crisps. I bought them last week. They were in the local produce section.

                              I'm not a fan, so don't ask me if they're good. LOL

                            2. d
                              deangold Sep 20, 2007 06:25 AM

                              Heysers (Heiser's?) on New Hampshire north of Randolph in outer Silver Spring has loads of apple varieties. I have seen all the varieties you mention at one time or another

                              1. Geoff Sep 20, 2007 06:29 AM

                                Large variety, including those two, were available at the Dupont farmers market last weekend. Also had them (one of the same farms is at both) on Saturday at the farmers market that's next to the school at approx 33rd and Alton Pl NW (sorry, blanking on the name)

                                1. Mister Big Sep 20, 2007 07:50 AM

                                  Takoma Park Farmers Market on Sunday.

                                  1. crosby_p Sep 21, 2007 04:46 AM

                                    Weber's Cider Mill Farm in Parkville has em.

                                    1. monavano Sep 25, 2007 05:42 PM

                                      I posted up thread that I thought Allenberg would be a good resource. Indeed, last Friday at Kingstowne I got incredible Honeycrisp and Empire apples. Their produce continues to amaze me (as do their prices!). Report here:

                                      1. s
                                        skipper Sep 26, 2007 10:49 AM

                                        Besides Heyser's on NH Avenue and Bonifant RD in Silver Spring, there is another orchard just south of NH and Briggs Chaney RD. And, if you're in for the ride, there are a number of orchards on RT 15 in Frederick Cty north of Frederick. Its a nice ride in a pretty area near Camp David. In addition, there is a farm stand on Gunpowder RD just south of Briggs Chaney in PG County which carries apples from an orchard in Westminster MD.

                                        1. alkapal Oct 2, 2007 06:48 AM

                                          Don't know the two varieties (one yellow, one red), but GIANT has locally grown apples on sale right now (at least through Thursday) that are so fresh, juicy, sweet and crispy. Very fresh and crispy! Honestly, I was shocked! I got mine in Lyon Village Giant, Arlington.

                                          Sold in the little paper "basket bags", just pick out how many you want. Only 88 cents a pound.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: alkapal
                                            squidsdc Oct 12, 2007 08:37 AM

                                            As much as some people want to bash all grocery stores, at least Giant has tried to stock produce from local farmers. The Honeycrisps we've been purchasing at Giant have been better than the Stayman and Crispin that we purchased at the local place in Cloverly on NH Ave. We also had the best Honeycrisps of the season from Costco (both Beltsville and Columbia stores)

                                            1. re: squidsdc
                                              alkapal Oct 12, 2007 04:05 PM

                                              the good local apples are still only 88 cents per pound at my Giant on Spout Run in Arlington.

                                          2. Pool Boy Oct 12, 2007 06:50 PM

                                            You could try Larriland Farms in Woodbine, MD.

                                            http://www.pickyourown.com = linky

                                            They have a wide variety of apples that they grow (usually at least two dozen varieties) and it's worth the trip.


                                            1. w
                                              ward44 Sep 11, 2010 04:38 PM

                                              Butler's Orchard in Germantown - off Brink Road, which is off Rt. 27.
                                              They have tons of freshly picked Honey Crisp apples (and some others - Gala, Fuji, Cortland, etc.) right now. Empires will come later...
                                              Tues-Sun 9:30 -5:30, closed Mon.

                                              1. m
                                                mdfoodlover Sep 12, 2010 05:08 PM

                                                Three years late, but today I enjoyed my first Honey Crisp of 2010.
                                                I bought mine at Good Earth produce in Olney, MD. They told me this is the second week they have had them, and that they were "local".
                                                Quite delicious!

                                                1. m
                                                  mrsphud Sep 14, 2010 03:56 PM

                                                  For Lariland Farms and Butler's Orchards you can pick your own or buy them already picked. Do check web sites first to see what is available and when. This time last year, however, I found a wonderful assortment of apples, peaches etc. from local farms at Eastern Market.

                                                  1. h
                                                    HilkaryIC Sep 19, 2010 06:28 PM

                                                    In my opinion, Black Rock Orchard has the BEST Honeycrisp Apples around. Just picked some up at the Bethesda FreshFarm farmers market on Saturday and they were perfect this week (10 times better than their batch last week). They also are at the Thursday Penn Quarter market.

                                                    1. Manassas64 Sep 20, 2010 10:21 AM

                                                      Someone at my gym picked apples at Butler's Orchard in MD last week and they were a little slice of heaven. I believe they were Jonathans. Butler's is closed for picking now so I went to Stribling in Markham, VA on Friday and their apple choices were limited and the ones I got were pretty poor tasting.

                                                      I am going to go to Graves Mountain for their Apple Harvest Festival in October.


                                                      Pick you own apples fresh from the trees. Varieties include: Red and Golden Delicious, Stayman, York, Winesap, Mutsu Fuji, Granny Smith and Empire.

                                                      4 Replies
                                                      1. re: Manassas64
                                                        daves_32 Sep 22, 2010 08:42 AM

                                                        I went to Butler's yesterday morning. They said most of their early crop was destroyed by stink bugs. The woman said that they should have some PYO around the second week of October. I grabbed a Honey crisp from the market and it was just ok. I grew up with Honey Crisp and know how they taste just off the tree. These were not. I was told they were from a farm in Pennsylvania. It seems to me that if they list PYO apples on the website and the types that are in the market, they should be from their farm. Or clearly stated. I will go back when they are picking more apples but this trip was a bust.

                                                        1. re: daves_32
                                                          Manassas64 Sep 22, 2010 08:46 AM

                                                          Good to know. I know that the woman where I got the apple from picked hers with her family.
                                                          They picked 60 lbs. LOL

                                                          1. re: Manassas64
                                                            daves_32 Sep 22, 2010 08:52 AM

                                                            No wonder the woman looked at me funny when I just got one apple. 60 lbs is probably four or so bushels. That's just excessive.
                                                            I just want the apples to be from that orchard. Otherwise, the supermarket is a viable alternative

                                                            1. re: daves_32
                                                              jqw3827 Sep 22, 2010 12:23 PM

                                                              Whole Foods in Clarendon definitely has Honey Crisps - says "locally grown". Saw them last night.

                                                              Also, there's a Farmer's Market on Vermont between H & I Streets every Thursday afternoon beside the McPherson metro (a/k/a Mrs. Obama's Farmer's Market). They have apples coming in from W. VA and Pennsylvania, etc. - buy as few or many as you like.

                                                      2. g
                                                        GailC Sep 22, 2010 03:24 PM

                                                        There are apple people at every farmers market in DC and Arlington County probably Maryland, too. Twin Springs is a great place for apples and they have stands at many different markets. Westmoreland has apples and they and Twin Springs are at Courthouse on Saturday morning. I'm surprised that you didn't get good ones at the Penn Quarter market because the lady whose farm is in PA has outstanding fruit/apples and she will tell you how ripe they are and when to eat them. Can't remember the name of her farm though.

                                                        Show Hidden Posts