Fruit & News of the Week: July 25th


Summer Lady Peaches
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
The Summer Lady is a variety that developed naturally in a commercial orchard in Fresno and was discovered in 1982. An early-ripening variant of the O’Henry, it is similarly well-balanced and aromatic. Slightly more round and uniform than its O’Henry parentage, the Summer Lady has deep burgundy streaks at maturity and delights our taste buds almost a full two weeks earlier.

Summer Fire Nectarines
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
The Summer Fire has a firm meaty flesh that isn’t as juicy as some of our other varieties but is packed with a red wine intensity that makes it a memorable and desirable nectarine. Often with a deeper reddish hue than the Fantasia, the Summer Fire is a variety that’s worth the extra effort it takes to slice and pit a clingstone: its warm yellow flesh is streaked beautifully with red near the pit.

Flavor King Pluot
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
A dark-skinned pluot with red flesh, it has an intense rich flavor combined with sweet, spicy tones that are reminiscent of the Santa Rosa. A nice acid bite and firm texture that softens beautifully as the fruit continues to ripen, the Flavor King is amazing out of hand and equally good for baking.

Flavor Heart Pluot
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
The Flavor Heart gets its name from its distinctively tapered shape. Its meaty, pale yellow flesh is very low in acid and the sweetness and color contrasts strikingly with its dark purple almost black skin.

Opal White Peach
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
Very low in acid, the Opal’s sweetness comes across two-fold. A beautiful dessert peach, the Opal has a delicate pink blush to its skin and mild flesh with a hint of vanilla.


Dear CSA Members:

Here we are again, another Battle of the Peaches. I love this time of year. I love the fruit, who doesn’t?!? And I love the involvement of our customers. It is so fun to hear from everyone which peach they like the best and why.

Many of you may not be familiar with why the “battle” started. It started about 30 (+/-) years ago between Farmer Al and I. He would go on and on about how amazing the Cal Reds were, blah, blah, blah. I would go on and on about how the O’Henry was a superior peach to the Cal Red. This went back and forth for years. Then one year (I’m guessing it was around 1990) I put the challenge to him to see which variety would sell out first at our farmer’s markets. I think I might have said, “put your money where your mouth is, Big Guy!” … something like that. It turned into such a fun “contest”. We would call each other and give status reports, how many Cal Red flats were left? how many O’Henry flats – which one sold out first? Then we got all the farmers markets involved and the battle was on! Our customers got involved by making sure they sent their friends to buy whichever peach was their favorite and it soon took on a life of its own with people asking when the Battle of the Peaches weekend would happen.

A few years back we decided to make it an official contest between the two peaches and solicit votes from everyone. It became a real battle with everyone voting online, wearing T-shirts that we gave away if you bought a whole flat of whichever variety you loved the most. Just plain, simple fun.

Now you’re all asking what is the difference between the two and why such the big deal? Well, first, the Cal Red really is a special peach (I will give Farmer Al that much). It has the texture of a cling, firm and solid, so it holds up superbly to any kind of processing you could dream up. It’s a high fructose peach, so you don’t need to add much of anything to make whatever recipe you are using them in really sparkle.

But the O’Henry? Sigh. It’s the best, of the best. It isn’t as firm as a Cal Red, it has the most perfect delicious soft-ripe, drip down your chin texture you will think you have died and gone to heaven at your first bite. But, it isn’t too sweet. You know what I’m talking about, the kind of sweet that makes your jaw ache. The O’Henry has just the perfect amount of acid that treats your pallet to an explosion of sweet with the hint of tart at the finish that makes you know you are eating something truly special. It’s balanced. The Cal Red lacks any acid. Clearly, I prefer balance, therefore, acid. Same as with the Cal Red, the O’Henry will hold up to anything you might want to put peaches in. It will soften more when cooked than the Cal Red, but not so much that you lose knowing it’s still a peach you are eating. So what’s the big deal between these two peaches? Taste them each for yourselves. You’ll discover why it’s a big deal.

Enjoy and share your thoughts with us!


Good Health,


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