It’s been a couple years since I first experienced the Opal apple and now they have become a variety I look forward to trying each year. I first encountered the Opal apple at the Whole Foods store in Ann Arbor, Michigan. A marketing representative was there giving out samples of this apple. It is a bright yellow color, more vivid in color than one of it’s parents, the Golden Delicious. It’s other parent is the Topaz apple. It is exclusively grown in the United States in Prescott, Washington. It is grown conventionally as well as organically. It was first discovered in Europe in 1999, eventually making it’s way to Washington.
My Experience with this Apple (Rating Scale 1-10)
Overall Feeling: Move over Golden Delicious, your offspring has you beat. The Opal apple is a flavorful apple that is sweet with enough acidity to not make the sweetness overwhelming. It’s an extremely juicy apple. When I cut into a lot of juice came out onto my napkin. The apple is also slow to oxidize, which means it will not turn brown when cut very quickly. This makes it a great choice for salads. As for cooking, the jury is still out on how well this apple does when baked. I do think though that it would make a great apple to use for applesauce, paired with a more tart apple. I am sure the high juice content of this apple would make it a good choice for juice or cider.
Since the Opal apple stores well it is available during the winter months, starting before Christmas and lasting until the end of winter.
Where to Buy Opal Apples
Here is a list of stores that carry Opal apples (by state). They may not be in all locations at the same time, so check with the individual store.
Mariano’s Fresh Market
Whole Foods Market
Here are some apple related kitchen tools I recommend:
Amco Dial-A-Slice Adjustable Apple Corer and Slicer : Allows you to slice apples into either 8 or 16 pieces
Zyliss Soft Skin Peeler : The best peeler I have ever owned. Does a great job peeling an apple.
Mirro Foley 2-Quart Stainless Steel Food Mill : A great tool for making your own applesauce. You can make the sauce without having to do any peeling.