Why you should be excited
Aunt Rachel is an old apple from the southern United States that ripens early and delivers very nice flavour.
The story of Aunt Rachel
The rationale for its name long since evaporated into the unexplained past, Aunt Rachel is an apple known to some simply as Rachel. But mostly, it’s not known at all, as this is a variety that – for many decades – grew only in Chatham County, North Carolina.
Only when apple hunter Lee Calhoun, who happens to live in Chatham County, set to work did it become known and spread slightly more widely than in the past.
And this is a good thing, as Calhoun reports that Aunt Rachel is an excellent early season apple, a juicy highlight to the first few weeks of apple season.
It’s a pretty one, too. The sort of apple that causes one to admire folks like Lee Calhoun.
Aunt Rachel Facts
Likely discovered in Chatham County, North Carolina, USA, unknown date (almost certainly pre-20th century).
Flavour, aroma, texture
The flesh is juicy and almost pale greenish, with a nice subacid flavour.
It's a medium-sized, lopsided apple with pale yellow background skin colour, covered mostly by a pretty array of thin, red stripes.
When they’re available
Early season (usually in late August).
Quality for fresh eating
Quality for cooking
Mainly used for fresh eating.
Quality for cider
Not particularly known for use in cider, but likely useful for adding some acid to blends.
We'll let you know when we find out.