How to choose the right apple

Abbotsford is Apple Happy!

Fall means apples, and trust us, there are lots to u-pick and harvest.

Archeologists have evidence that humans have been enjoying apples since 6500 B.C! While our farms hasn’t been around for that long, some have been growing apples for decades and even make fresh tree-to-bottle apple cider.


How to choose the right apple?

Did you know that there are more than 1,000 varieties of apples grown in North America and dozens grown in Southern British Columbia?

From eating to baking, it pays to plan ahead.  If your apple is too sweet, your pie could be soggy, and if it’s too tart and firm, you might scare your kids off of apples for months!

Here’s a quick list:

  • Alkmene: The flavour is quite strong, similar to a granny smith. That’s why the Alkmene is great for baking!  If you like a strong, tart apple early in the season, then give this one a try.
  • Ambrosia: Discovered by chance in a British Columbia orchard, this sweet beauty is similar to the Golden Delicious. A perfect snack that is not too firm and not too soft.  If you bake with it, be sure to use less sugar.
  • Fuji: Originally grown in Japan, the flavor is predominantly sweet. Yet, there’s also a tangy fizz. Fujis are superb for eating fresh or adding to salads.
  • Gala: One of the most widely grown apple varieties in the world, and a mainstay of the produce section. If you want a reliable, sweet easy-eating apple, Gala is hard to beat.
  • Honeycrisp:  The Honeycrisp earned its name from being as ‘sweet as honey’ and, extraordinarily, crisp.  They tend to be jumbo-sized, and are great for eating on their own or in salads, sauces, and baked goods.
  • Jonagold: Our longstanding favourite, Jonagolds are a cross between Golden Delicious and Jonathan apples. They are firm, crisp, crunchy, and sweet. Truly versatile, these beauties are great for just eating or adding to salads. They also bake well, keeping their firmness inside your next apple pie!
  • Sunrise: The perfect blend of sweet and tart, Sunrise apples are one of the first varieties to be harvested each year. They are excellent all-purpose apples.
  • Spartan: These crunchy, sweet apples are great in lunch boxes, briefcases, and purses. Spartans are excellent all-purpose apples.
  • Elstar: Similar to the Golden Delicious, this is a sweet, versatile apple that’s very popular across Europe and is making headlines in BC.

Let’s Squeeze those Apples into Cider

TavesFamily Farms Applebarn got started with nothing more than a backyard press, barrels of their signature apple—the Jonagold– and a curiousity for what pressed apples would taste like. Fortunately, technological improvements mean they don’t use a hand-cranked machine anymore. Gets hard on the hands after a while. Today, the Taves make fresh cold-pressed cider and pasteurized cider at their estate cider mill.  You can even head to the farm and watch the cider being made before your very eyes.

WillowviewFarms is located just down the street and is also an apple haven with varieties like Elstar and Gingergold and pasteurized cider.

What is the difference between apple juice and apple cider?

Apple cider is apple juice that is unfiltered.  It’s like orange juice with pulp and is, literally, just squeezed apples. With no added sugar or preservatives, it’s 100% natural. Pasteurized cider has a 2-year shelf life; whereas, cold-pressed cider can be refrigerated for up to a week and a half and even frozen. Regardless of which cider you prefer, it’s fall in a glass. Better yet, add mulling spices and warm it up. We promise, your

Thanks to Summer Dhillon of Slap Communications for this blog!