Bramley apples are green. Right? Well now.. as always with mother nature she breaks the rules and throws in something a little different.
Did you know Bramleys from Armagh used to be either Crimson Red or Green?
There is no real difference in the taste between the two other than red ones were certainly more colourful. But for whatever reason pure green is what is expected of a Bramley and the Crimson Bramley is rarely seen as the red tree was not replanted when the older trees needed replaced in our Armagh Orchards. So last week while I was on the phone with Brian to order our apples for the week he asked if I would take a few Crimson Bramleys as he still had a few trees growing on the farm. Because of their colour he had difficulty selling them, therefore they mainly went for juicing. Yes! Bring them on I said. They are a delight to the eye and a pleasure to sell as the older generations recognise them and younger customers are surprised and somewhat bemused to find a locally grown apple, they never knew existed.
I often feel we the consumers miss out on the diversity that nature can provide right on our own doorstep. There is no one is telling us what we could have so most shoppers miss out. Have been brainwashed to think only of Pink ladies, Braeburns, Granny Smiths and forget to expect more? Now I have to say that there lies an example of really good marketing by the French apples growers, by the New Zealand apple growers and by all the apple growers in far away places.
Northern Ireland folks for the most part are unaware of the varieties available and even when we are presented with the homegrown varieties they are often overlooked in deference to the apples we are familiar with. At least this has been my experience within our own shop and it is totally understandable. I don’t have the ability to construct a marketing campaign but I can tell you we have Falstaffs and Laxtons this week, Jon a go Red and Galas from Armagh to follow until Christmas. There is a diversity of flavour and a lingering depth of taste within our local product which can come as a bit of a suprise. No matter where you shop I’d encourage you to try some local grown if you see them. You too might be surprised.