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Food Review: Apples

July 21, 2010

I think there is a key problem in our civilization – things that seem perfectly sensible (or, indeed, practically required in fact for a person who wishes to have a clear conscience) are frowned upon for no good reason. Yesterday, I decided that I wanted to put my curiosity at rest – I have often taken for granted which kind of apple I like, and there simply was not enough backing for my choice. I went to the supermarket, and bought seven apples, one of each variety in stock. Apparently, this isn’t an acceptable thing to do in polite society, and as the cashier went through each specimen, I slowly realized the gravity of the faux pas I had just engaged in.

Leaving quickly to avoid being arrested, I rushed home to give the apples to my girlfriend; who, once she had stopped rolling her eyes at me, chopped them (I am not allowed near the knives, apparently) all up for the scientific analysis that we call “eating”. Here are the results. Beware, they may come as a shock!


Look at it. So moist.

Coming in at number one, from the people who brought us tentacle hentai, is the Fuji apple. A cross dating from the 1930s Imperial Japan, made from the red delicious and some other apple I’ve never heard of (the “Virginia Ralls Genet”), I found this to have the most apple-y flavour, with a good texture. A++ would eat again.



Golden? Delicious? You decide.

Despite being liberal with the meaning of the word “golden”, this apple at least gets close to the mark with the second word. Dating from 1914, the golden delicious had a very pleasant flavour and unknown parentage. It is quite literally, a bastard apple. If I were to go all wine snob on this, I would talk about the honeyed notes, and fresh finish, but instead I’ll just say that it tasted pretty good.



Beneath that skin lies sweet reliability.

With the most erotic name, the Pink Lady comes in at number 3. Apparently we Australians just can’t get enough of it, and I can see why. It appears to be a dependable, reliable and generally rather good apple (it’s also a golden delicious hybrid). Supposedly these are significantly less variable than my two preferred varieties, so look here if you want to provide a consistent apple-ing experience.



Immune to melting.

I set this apple as my “baseline” fruit yardstick, if only because it is the one I always thought I liked the most. Granny Smiths are firm, semi-sweet, Australian cooking and eating apples dating from 1868. Unlike the weaksauce other apples I have reviewed, old Granny Smith still holds together even after an hour in the oven – she just can’t be stopped. Firm and crisp, semi-juicy.



The spots on it are leprosy

First to the bottom three charges the Royal Gala, apparently made to reproduce that taste of paper we all secretly crave. Made by a New Zealander (no surprises there), this apple tasted watery, had a skin as thick as a whale, and generally was disappointing all round. The grainy texture was frankly unappealing, and what little flavour it had quickly subsided.



iSundowner, more like

With a bit of a pretentious name comes the Sundowner apple, apparently so un-noteworthy as to not even have a wikipedia page about it. Probably not a bad thing really, although the apple had the miraculous ability to turn into pure sawdust once inserted into a human mouth. If only that power could be harnessed for good. Only pros are its crispness and general attractiveness. It all goes to hell once you eat it.



Satan's own fruit.

And lucky last, the Red Delicious, or as I like to call it “False Advertising” – it was created at the same time and by the same people as the infinitely superior golden delicious. The apple is arguably red but by god it is not in the slightest bit delicious. I could probably replicate the experience of eating it with a vacuum cleaner and some quick drying cement, but I’d rather not re-live the horror. If Adam and Eve got kicked out because of this thing, frankly I’d ask for a refund – seriously, this apple tastes like total arse.


So we come to the end of a hopefully enlightening foray into the world of apples. Seriously, I have no idea how I managed to write almost 1000 words on this topic. Actually, I take that back – I know exactly how I managed to, which is perhaps more worrying. If you haven’t tried it, you should do what I did – you’d be amazed what side-by-side tastings will do to your opinions. Also, anyone who disagrees with my assessment is objectively wrong.

The biggest irony here is that until I did this, I hadn’t eaten an apple for nearly 12 years. Next time, I might even review a food that I actually enjoy.

One Comment
  1. I appreciate this post.
    My husband started buying Pink Lady apples recently, and I’ve fallen in love with them. But, if he hadn’t gotten them, I probably wouldn’t have ever tried them – just stuck with Fuji apples and been done with it. I love trying new things, but apples aren’t really something you immediately think to test against one another.
    I’m glad you figured out which one is your favorite! :]

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