2010 - Gravenstein apple season is here !!!
It must be. When I was reading the SF Chronicle online there was an ad for the Gravenstein Apple Festival. Here's the festival website for details.
Here's my obsessive posts from last year where I tried almost every gravenstein apple in the Sebastopol area and lots of products made with the apples such as cider, pie, etc
Apple-looza: Gravenstein Apple Adventure results
Apple Madness: 2009
Here's a list I put together
Gravenstein Apple Adventures Around Sebastopol
So, what is happening this year? How are the apples? I want my virtual taste.
Picked up 10lbs from Hale's Sunday. I usually get more but resolved to go back in a week or 2, as these early apples were quit small w/ little red coloration, and the aroma lacked that intoxicating quality I'm used to. This is the earliest I've ever gone on a Grav run.
The one I just had was very firm, crisp and tart, and sent juices running down my arm.
Only one vendor at the Sebastopol Farmers market had them, and it was a very small box. The supply of fresh juice at Andy's Produce was light as well.
Notables I came away with from Andy's cheese selection include: Redwood Hill smoked goat's cheddar; a cheddar from the Loleta Cheese Factory; Valley Ford Estero Gold "Italian farmhouse" cheese.
Also picked up some very good hummus w/ harissa from "The Hummus Guy" at the farmers market.
My friend Patty, who lives out your way, made an incredibly gorgeous Gravenstein apple tart. I hadn't heard of them until I read her recipe, then found this thread. This post includes a little history of the Gravenstein apple for those who are interested:
Got my first batch from DeVoto last Saturday. They are acidic and very crisp - just the way I like them. Stan DeVoto said it's because we had such cool weather and rain late in the season.
I made a crumble on Sunday, will do a galette tomorrow. The crumble received raves from my guests on both flavor and texture of the apples.
I bought a brown grocery bag filled with the loveliest Gravensteins yesterday from a family with a couple pickup trucks parked on the dusty shoulder of Hwy. 12 near Watertrough Rd.
$15 for what felt like a generous 15lbs, the bag was completely full.
These are bursting with that floral-sweet Gravenstein character; they filled our car with an intoxicating aroma and sport beautiful red striations.
Gravensteins at farmers markets are funny; the market at Walnut Park in Petaluma had just one stand with a shoebox-sized box half-full of tiny Gravs, just like we saw at Sebastopol a few weeks ago.
re: Jeni Bean
That's Mike's Truck Garden.
There are red gravensteins that will go fully red. The non-red ones will be yellow-green when ripe with red striping. I picked some red ones yesterday at a friend's ranch. But they're going fast, get 'em while you can.
Mike's Truck Garden
1319 River Rd, Fulton, CA
Bought my second case of Gravenstein Apples this season from Walker Apples on Saturday. They're $25/box this year, very good, old trees, dry farmed etc. Mr. Walker said that he might have some Macintosh this week, and that the late-season Arkansas Blacks would be ugly because of the wet weather early in the growing season, but would be good. I think this works out to something like $0.50/lb. They grow 27 kinds or so. They cut tastes of what's ripe and then you decide what to buy. You don't have to buy a case, but I figure, I'm there.
The full leg of that acquisition tour stops at Liberty Ducks in Penngrove, Joe Matos Cheese in Santa Rosa, Walker Apples in Graton and Drake's Bay Oysters in Inverness. Take an Ice chest.
10955 Upp Rd, Graton, CA