Why you should be excited

Kestrel is a Canadian apple -- bred in Nova Scotia -- that’s a delicious highlight of the early October harvest.

The story of Kestrel

Many a good-quality apple remains unknown simply because grocers don’t like carrying too many different varieties. Which is the only reason we can come up with for why Kestrel, an apple that looks good, tastes great and keeps well, is rarely seen.

A pretty red apple with crisp juiciness and a pleasant, mild aroma, Kestrel is a fresh-eating apple that rates among the better ones out there for texture, flavour and storage time. But you'll never see it in a grocery store, it seems.

If you’re a fan of the B.C.-bred Spartan or Eastern Canadian favourites Macoun and Empire, then you most certainly should give the similar-but-different Kestrel a try .

Kestrel Facts

Its origins

Bred in Kentville, Nova Scotia, Canada, 1950 introduction.

Flavour, aroma, texture

Crisp, juicy, melting texture with a mild aroma and pleasant sub-acid flavour.


A pretty, medium-sized, red apple, described by those who are particular about their colours as ranging from carmine to deep currant red.

When they’re available

Mid-season (usually early October).

Quality for fresh eating

Very good.

Quality for cooking

Mainly used for fresh eating.

Quality for cider

Not particularly known for use in cider.

Keeping ability

Good (2 or 3 months when kept cold).