No tangerines this winter (2012-2013)?
I've been looking/asking for tangerines at Whole Foods for weeks. They keep pointing me to the clementines. I have tried them a few times and find them to be rather tasteless and they also dry out very quickly. I really love tangerines but can't seem to find them anywhere this winter. We've tried Giant and Safeway, too.
Was there some kind of tangerine disaster in Florida and California this year?
I bought some really nice tangerines at Giant probably around the first of December. The funny thing is they and the clemntines were right next to each other, and the quality of he tangerines was head and shoulders above. The tangerines went pretty quickly though.
If you like this sort of thing, might I suggest that you order honeybells from a source like Harry and David around Oct 1? Hey come in early January, and to my palate are the best orange-like fruit I've ever had.
I bought honey tangerines once -- but only once -- this winter, but like you I've found Clementines have dominated the citrus fruit shelves. I found these at the McLean Balducci's.
I don't know where you live, but you have a few more reasonable options to investigate for Honey tangerines: Harris Teeter and Wegman's. I'd also call your closest Balducci's and ask if tangerines are in stock at the moment.
FWIW, I've been eating Satsumas (AKA Mandarin Oranges) this season when I want something small with a hit of flavor. I like the tart-sweet flavor of Satsumas better than the sweet-only flavor of Clementines. Look for Satsumas loose with a bit of stem and leaf attached. The loose fruits have been juicier than the one time I bought a plastic clam shell filled with Satsumas.