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Another New Jersey Craving: Macoun apples!

Epicure Oct 11, 2007 09:40 AM

I don't know whether there's any hope of this, but I figured if anyone knows if it's possible to get Macouns in the L.A. region, it will be a Chowhound. These are my favorite apples in the universe, which I was just dramatically reminded of when my mother brought me six of them last weekend when she came to visit. Last winter I found some McIntosh apples at the Santa Monica Farmers' Market (Saturday Arizona one), and I would also be happy to find those again, even if they're not as delicious as those Macouns. If desperation strikes, though, I found I can order some on the internet for almost $2 per apple.

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    Diana RE: Epicure Oct 12, 2007 08:25 AM

    Try the Wednesday Santa Monica Market . More sellers are there with more variety. Or, drive to Oak Glen and see what's being harvested right now.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Diana
      Epicure RE: Diana Oct 12, 2007 08:40 AM

      I can't get to the Wednesday market unless I take off work, unfortunately. Does Oak Glen have apple varieties more common to the East Coast/New England? I'm not familiar with Oak Glen; maybe you could tell me more.

      1. re: Epicure
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        Diana RE: Epicure Oct 12, 2007 09:23 AM

        I don't even now if we grow a lot of east coast varieties, but Oak Glen is a small community in the San Bernadino mountains with a lot of orchards. Different apples are available at different times of the season.

        It's a fun trip. Here is a few links:

        http://www.snow-line.com/Snow-Line/Apples.html

        http://www.rileysfarm.com/index.html?apple_types.htm

        http://www.momscountryorchards.com/

        http://willowbrookapple.tripod.com/

        Also, the other direction, past Mojave, lies Tehahapi, another apple growing community with Orchards-very worth a visit.

        http://tehachapi.com/apples/index1.html

        1. re: Diana
          Epicure RE: Diana Oct 12, 2007 10:01 AM

          Thanks so much, Diana. None of them seem to have Macouns, but what's interesting is that Snow-line has the two apple varieties--McIntosh and Arkansas Black--that become Macouns when crossed! Now I'm curious to try Arkansas Blacks...
          It does sound like a fun trip, too.

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      LisaN RE: Epicure Oct 12, 2007 10:16 AM

      I moved here from the East Coast 5 years ago, and I've looked for the Macouns (Haven't been to Oak glen though) and I've never found them.

      If you do happen to find some, please let us know!

      11 Replies
      1. re: LisaN
        Epicure RE: LisaN Oct 12, 2007 10:19 AM

        Trust me, I will! What do you think about McIntosh? And have you tried Arkansas Black? I wonder what the effect would be of eating them together...
        Nothing compares to a Macoun, does it?

        1. re: Epicure
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          LisaN RE: Epicure Oct 12, 2007 10:24 AM

          I like McIntosh if you can find some that aren't mushy. The newest one I like are the Honeycrisp - but I like the New York ones that Trader Joe's carried last year better than the huge ones from Washington everyone else has had - maybe I'll go to Trader Joe's today to see if they have them yet.

          I haven't tried the Arkansas Black, but I think on a Huell Howser show where he went to Oak Glen, he interviewed someone who grew apples who said that the Arkansas isn't a good eating apple, it is very, very hard (not positive though, my memory might be slipping)

          Good cider is another hard thing to find out here!

          1. re: LisaN
            Epicure RE: LisaN Oct 12, 2007 11:12 AM

            Oh, that would make sense about the Arkansas Black--the best Macouns are very, very crisp--crisper than McIntosh--but so sweet. I'm still curious to try the Arkansas Black, but it might make more sense to try to get some crisp McIntosh. You're right about the mushy factor--the ones I got at the SM Farmers' Market last year were just not that crisp.
            What do you like about the Honeycrisp?

            1. re: Epicure
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              Ericruo RE: Epicure Oct 13, 2007 08:42 AM

              Arkansas Black apples are, with Pink Ladies, my current favorite apples. Arkansas Black apples are firm and can be dry, probably the reason that some think they aren't good to eat fresh. The flavor, though is terrific, its got some complexity because of the fruit acids. Its the same general reason I like Pink Ladies, the flavor is multidimensional. If you can find an orchard that dry farms their apples, or at least doesn't overwater them, you won't be dissapointed. Arkansas Blacks keep well, too and mellow, the flesh becoming less hard.

              1. re: Epicure
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                LisaN RE: Epicure Oct 17, 2007 07:08 PM

                The honeycrisp are nice and crisp, and the New York ones seem juicier than the Washington ones. The Washington ones also look like they are on steriods, they are huge!

                1. re: LisaN
                  Epicure RE: LisaN Oct 18, 2007 07:35 AM

                  Can you buy those New York Honeycrisp anywhere locally?

                  1. re: Epicure
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                    LisaN RE: Epicure Oct 18, 2007 09:33 AM

                    I just bought some at the Trader Joe's in Santa Clarita, you could check with your local Trader Joe's.

                    1. re: LisaN
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                      Diana RE: LisaN Oct 18, 2007 11:34 AM

                      Gelson's has them. I think Whole Foods does, too.

          2. re: LisaN
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            TEM RE: LisaN Oct 13, 2007 11:48 AM

            Lisa, Oak Glen has some wonderful fresh cider mills. We have done taste tests . . . bought 1/2 gallons from several orchards, brought them home, and did side-by-side blindfolded taste tests. Our particular favorite is Los Rios. Snowline is now pasteurizing its cider, but we like it, but just not as much as Los Rios. Los Rios also has a dynamite apple crisp and apple pie. If you are interested in apple dumplings, then the Apple Dumpling Restaurant (natch) would have the best in town.
            As for the Macouns, I have seen them somewhere . . . cannot recall at the moment. I will put on my thinking cap and see if there is anything there.

            1. re: TEM
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              LisaN RE: TEM Oct 17, 2007 07:09 PM

              I'll keep that in mind. Oak Glen is quite a drive from where I am, so I'd have to plan a weekend for it.

              1. re: TEM
                Epicure RE: TEM Oct 18, 2007 09:59 AM

                So, TEM, has your thinking cap revealed anything? I've bought some other apples that are tasty enough--winesap from the Culver City Farmers' Market--but they only make me crave Macouns even more.

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              LisaN RE: Epicure Oct 29, 2007 02:55 PM

              I think Macouns don't exist out here, went to Gopher Glen Apple Farm in San Luis Obispo. They had about 20 different kinds of apples and let you taste them all if you want to. You could go and taste them to see which ones you like.

              They also had unpasteurized cider which was very tasty.
              http://www.gopherglen.com/

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