When Exactly: Thursday Feb. 12 - 12 pm
Cultivar: Granny Smith
Purchased From: Caradonna Farms - Union Square Greenmarket (NY, NY)
Color: I don’t know, I’m colorblind.
Eaten How: With Ochs Orchards “Olde Style” Peanut Butter (Warwick, NY).
Last Saturday was downright frigid, and there was a dishearteningly small number of farmstands left in Union Square by midday. The only apple purveyor still standing was Caradonna Farms, which always pulls up to the square with an enormous supply. I must say, though: other than granting me a proper introduction to the Winter Banana, Caradonna’s product has never blown me away. But greenmarket is always better than not-greenmarket, so a-shopping I went.
My last two local Grannies were shockingly poor and this was to be my first Caradonna Granny, so my hopes were not terribly high. Thus, I was relieved to find a texture that, though a little weak, could be defined as crunchy. The first bite released a Granny lime aroma that raised my expecations somewhat. Sure enough, this apple showed up followed through with a decent stab at the classic New York-style Granny lime flavor. The acidity was not quite high enough to bowl me over, but at least it was there (already a strong improvement over the last offerings from Phillips Farm). In further defense of this fruit: I like a huge acidic kick in my Grannies, so I might say this was more of a populist apple, giving up the level of sourness that most people probably want (I surveyed nearly everyone on the planet before typing that sentence in order to stake my claim with confidence, sorry if I missed you in my research). A nice hit of raspberry added a bright, sweet note and a hair more acidity to the proceedings. It also got me excited for the forthcoming PB combo.
As I should have expected, the populist lime did not hold up too well under the PB. However, the raspberry’s sweetness was brought out further, creating a wholly comforting, childhood-memory-stirring PBJ sensation. Raspberry was once my preferred jelly choice for PBJs, so this combo really hit home for me.
A little more acid would have brought the combo and the apple itself to another level, and there was definitely some room for improvement in texture. Still, the raspberry turn showed some creativity, and it was nice to see the Granny lime flavor return after the last few disappointing entries. Not bad, Caradonna.