What is your favorite Apple Variety and what do you use it for?

wyoDreamer

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I love apples! But, I am also an apple snob. I have specific varieties that I use for specific things.
Here is my starter list of apple varieties and what I like/don't like about them:

Red Delicious - I don't like these. Yes they are crispy and pretty, but they are also very low in flavor. You can't cook with them as they stay firm and they don't have any taste when dehydrated.

Yellow Delicious - One of my top 5 favorite apples. Can't grow them here. Great for pies, dehydrating, general eating. Great flavor, holds shape when baked in a pie.

Jona-Gold - One of my top 5 favorite apples. Can't grow them here. Great for pies, dehydrating, canning, general eating. Makes chunky applesauce :)

Macintosh - A good apple, but doesn't make my top 5 list. Grown in my area. OK general eating - lacks crunch. Cooks down to much for pies in my opinion. Excellent for applesauce.

Macoun - One of my top 5 favorite apples - Best for eating, very good for dehydrating. Does not cook that well, so no pies or applesauce.

Braeburn - One of my top 5. Good flavor, cooks well, crunchy for general eating.

Jonathon - One of my top 5. Good flavor. Great for pies, sauce, general eating and dehydrating. Hard to find.

Idared - another great apple. Good all-around and tasted great. Hard to find now-a-days.

So, how about you - what is your favorite apple and why?
 

frustratedearthmother

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I'm with you on the Red Delicious. However, I was gifted a couple hundred pounds of them. A majority have gone for pig/chicken/goat snacks. I have also turned many lbs of them into apple butter and it's quite tasty - probably because of the sugar and spices, lol. I have dehydrated some - not a lot. I find them "ok" for snacking.

I love a good Honey Crisp for out of hand eating. Also enjoy a Granny Smith on occasion, but really like them for pies.

Apples don't grow well this far south so most of what we get (and how it tastes) is dependent upon good storage and delivery.
 

bambi

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I love to mix apples when making applesauce along with a pear.

Ambrosia: wonderful flavor
Back Arkansas: late-season grower, great cooking apple and good storage apple. Can't find them as easily around here like you use to.
Honey crisp: eating apple
Macintosh: it complements most apples when mixing Apples
Granny Smith: tartness and flavor Good cooking apple

There used to be so many Apple orchards around where I live. but now not so many.
 

baymule

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I'm in Texas.....not much apple growing around here. :hit
 

milkmansdaughter

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I never liked Red delicious...... UNTIL I lived in Washington State and got them fresh. They are wonderful fresh, but don't necessarily travel or store well.

I grew up with my grandma's old McIntosh apple tree and they were my all-time favorite, but current ones that I can buy usually are too soft, and have a LOT less crunch, juice and flavor.

I'm in the same boat with Granny Smiths. Too often when I buy then now, they are either not quite ripe or they are almost woody. Sooo disappointing! They used to be my favorite for baking.

And the 100% apple cider I recently got has no flavor.

I DO think a lot of it does have a lot to do with where you live, and which apples grow well in your area. I've planted probably a dozen apple trees in my yard in the last few years, and am really looking forward to our own fresh fruit in the next year or two. Our goal is to then graft several of my grandma's McIntosh apple branches onto trees here.

@bambi I'm glad to hear about the black Arkansas. I've never had them but planted two trees I got free from our extension office.
 

bambi

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I never liked Red delicious...... UNTIL I lived in Washington State and got them fresh. They are wonderful fresh, but don't necessarily travel or store well.

I grew up with my grandma's old McIntosh apple tree and they were my all-time favorite, but current ones that I can buy usually are too soft, and have a LOT less crunch, juice and flavor.

I'm in the same boat with Granny Smiths. Too often when I buy then now, they are either not quite ripe or they are almost woody. Sooo disappointing! They used to be my favorite for baking.

And the 100% apple cider I recently got has no flavor.

I DO think a lot of it does have a lot to do with where you live, and which apples grow well in your area. I've planted probably a dozen apple trees in my yard in the last few years, and am really looking forward to our own fresh fruit in the next year or two. Our goal is to then graft several of my grandma's McIntosh apple branches onto trees here.

@bambi I'm glad to hear about the black Arkansas. I've never had them but planted two trees I got free from our extension office.
I hope to hear how well your trees produce. Arkansas Black are not really white on the inside more of yellow and crisp and tart
 

wyoDreamer

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I just finished eating a local grown (WI) Honey Crisp apple. It was crunchy and somewhat juicy but I was not impressed with the flavor - not really alot of flavor, but not quite what I want in an apple either. Not sure how to describe it - kinda honey like, but more of a buckwheat honey taste than a sweet, wildflower honey.
 

flowerbug

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i do not really have a favorite apple. i like the ones on the tart side the best. i do agree that Red Delicious really needs to be fresh to be decent otherwise i can pass on those completely and have something else. one thing nice about MI is that it does have some good apples.

i'm not too picky about texture when cooked because i eat almost all apples that ways. the best apple sauce we ever made was done from a mix of apples a guy had leftover from his organic orchard. we made many gallons of it and canned it and also gave tubs to the food kitchen place for the poor folks. alas we did not know until a bit too late that we needed to use the finer mesh in the food mill so some of the tubs had a bit of skin or core in there that the mill didn't catch. still it was good. :)

for cider i like the first pressing before things get too sweet. i only want just a glass or two and then i am ok for the rest of the season.

my friend up north would drive around and find old abandoned or wild trees to harvest apples from. some were rather tart but when he dehydrated them they would sweeten up a bit and those made great snacks.
 

Britesea

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There were two apple trees on our property when we bought it. One was Red Delicious, which, as others have said, are good fresh but that's about it. I tried freeze drying some this year so we will see how they turn out. The second tree is something that works well for baking and cooking- we don't know what it is. I would like to try grafting a couple of other varieties some day. My all time favorite has always been Winesaps, which sadly almost became extinct when Mt St Helens blew her top. But I've heard that they are making a comeback finally. I haven't seen any in the grocery stores or offered in seed catalogs, but maybe someday...
 
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