Best place to get oranges to be shipped as a gift?
I always had extraordinary good service with these folks for more years than I care to count:
Dooley Groves in Sun City -- www.dooleygroves.com
Mixon's Fruit Farms in Bradenton -- www.mixon.com
(Full disclaimer: Dooley does not currently grow their own fruit as they lost ALL of their trees to a blight a few years ago - then a bigger tragedy of losing the family patriarch in a horrible car accident. They just replanted the first grove this year, so they are on their way to growing their own fruit again. They do, however, ship excellent fruit at great prices -- and they're incredibly nice folks.)
And if you could figure out a way that Mixon's could ship their awesome orange sherbet (made with fresh juice) I'd be a happy girl.
I have been very satisfied doing business with Dean Mixon. A suggestion: the sweetest, juciest orange of all is called the honeybell, which is actually a hybrid of a tangerine and a grapefruit but one would never know from its appearance and sweetness. The harvest season is very short and begins mid- January. Mixon will send a gift recipient a card before Christmas with a note to expect a gift of honeybells in a few weeks. They are not widely known outside of Florida and my yankee friends were amazed. Rarely a grocery store item, and probably nowhere out of state. I love them - juice in the a.m., screwdriver at happy hour for the 3 week season.
they are SOOO good -- and I almost fell over when I saw a huge bin of them at my local marche here in France. I wouldn't EVER have expected to find honeybells over here. We had a honeybell tree in our yard that bears bushels every year.
The Houghtaling family (owner of Dooley Groves) just planted an entire honeybell grove and should start picking in three years.