Why you should be excited
Ohio Nonpareil is a Gravenstein-like variety from the USA in the 19th century that's retained niche appeal.
The story of Ohio Nonpareil
If you love the flavour of a Gravenstein apple but are not such a big fan of its soft flesh, you might just have found a new favourite in Ohio Nonpareil.
This 19th century discovery has similar juicy, savoury, yet sweet flavour to the Gravenstein, yet is firmer fleshed, making it popular among mid-Americans in the know who share the modern predilection for firmer apples.
Early ripening and good for both baking and fresh eating, this is a regional favourite that might very well deserve to be better known by those of us who don't frequent Ohio farmers' markets.
Ohio Nonpareil was a commercially important variety in its region during the 19th century.
Ohio Nonpareil Facts
Discovered in Massillon, Ohio, USA. First described in 1848.
Flavour, aroma, texture
The juicy flesh is both savoury and distinctly sweet. Although far from hard, it is firmer than the otherwise similar Gravenstein.
The greenish-yellow background skin colour is striped and mottled with light red.
When they’re available
Early season (usually in early September).
Quality for fresh eating
Quality for cooking
Quality for cider
While it's not particularly known for its use in cider, you can be sure it was used in a lot of old-time ciders.
So-so (1 or 2 months when kept refrigerated).