Stone fruit season in swing
Last week, we brought in the first harvest of Spring Lady yellow peaches from Masumoto Family Farm in Del Rey. Word in the Valley is that everything is 2-4 weeks behind last year. But with the grounds watered in and beautiful blossoms turning into delicious fruit, our farmer friends need our support now that they’re ready to (fruit) party!! A harsh spring means this year’s crop of Spring Ladies is about a third of normal. On the bright side, the flavor is so. on. point. Zippy, packed with flavor, high-acid…wowowow just electric! We just love the intro to peach season with this variety. We like to store our peaches on a pedestal of sorts, kinda like royalty: flat surface, stem side down, space to breathe, at room temp. It’ll taste amazing this way on day 1, 2 or 3 (if it makes it that long).
These are Masumoto’s first Rose Diamond yellow nectarines of the season. They are indeed, the rosiest of diamonds in our eyes. With lots of sugar and lots of acid, they find balance in dynamism, like two bottle rockets ricocheting after one another. Nikiko Masumoto describes the Rose Diamond in similar terms, as “fireworks on the tongue.” We’re so here for it! This variety tends to run a little smaller so it’s fallen out of style, becoming less common in commercial production. Fun fact, nectos and peaches are genetically identical except nectarines have a recessive gene that makes them fuzzless! At fruitqueen, nectos are in their own category but when it comes to practical uses (eating, baking, preserving, storing) they can be thought of the same way as their fuzzy peach friends.
To balance the WOW acid from the yellow peaches and nectos, we’ve got the second harvest of Spring Snow white peaches from Blossom Bluff Orchards. It’s clingstone with a creamy white flesh and all the sweetness you want in a white peach – YUM. We like this one because it’s got some florality that adds a bit of complexity to it! The Spring Snow has beautiful coloring, tastes great, and is so juicy you may need to hover over the sink while eating it!!
Organic cherries are hard to come by, even more so this year. Fan club followers have tasted delicious first-of-the-season CA cherries last month from Murray Family Farms in Bakersfield. Now we’re moving up to a real classic: Bing cherries from Lagier Ranches in Escalon. Our friends John and Casey Lagier are damn good at many things, and one of them is growing cherries (and bronx grapes and page mandarins and almonds). Cherry season is late up here too, but you’re rewarded for your patience, fruit-lovers, as this is just the start of their single acre orchard’s season. We’re gettin’ the first hit! Bings will get bigger, deeper in color, and then in the blink of an eye they’ll be done for the season, so savor them. These 25 year old cherry trees are beautiful and big (and y’know gnarly, like how cherry trees get) – so big Casey can’t get her arms around the trunk as a self-proclaimed tree hugger. Store these in the fridge if you don’t eat them in one sitting.
We’ve run Chandler strawberries from Swanton Berry Farm every week and no we’re not sick of them. Every week, the flavor gets better and better. We’ve rotated between first and second year berries and in last week’s box, the first year berries were ginormous! The attentive fan club member might have noticed some berries last week that were ripe, bright red, and delicious with a sort of green-seeded nubbin at the tip. They taste so good that some of us may not have even noticed. A few external factors can contribute to this. The lygus bug, a common insect found in strawberry fields, can cause pressure on strawberries during development resulting in this deformity. Frost or any sort of mishap during the flowering process or frost can also contribute. We still think they taste pretty darn good.
We know, we know, we remind you every week to enjoy and appreciate every Coastal Moon blueberry you put in your mouth. We mean it. We’ve run these every week and we still can’t wait for them to come in again! We've moved into the San Joaquin blueberry, a somehow-even-bigger mid-season variety. Enjoy these little “moonbabies”!