For over 30 years, each autumn the Monterey Bay Chapter of the California Rare Fruit Growers has held a public apple tasting that is likely one of the world’s most extensive. From the apple tasting and all of our other events and amenities, I have gained a lot of knowledge and enjoyment through my association with MBCRFG, and have been currently paying my dues by serving as the chapter’s chair for the last two years.
The apple tasting, held each year at Wilder Ranch State Park in Santa Cruz, honors the heritage of our region’s once prominent history in apple orcharding, as well as the amazing genodiversity and range of shapes, colors, textures, and flavors in the world’s favorite temperate fruit crop.
Our tasting features a wide range of apples, all locally-grown by our members, from centuries-old heirlooms to completely novel, locally-bred varieties (including a special section of redfleshed apples that have captured local imagination for quite some time).
I have been interested in practicing video production, and cut together this mini-documentary from some impromptu footage and photography I captured at our 2018 tasting, featuring some tasters’ perspectives from among ~500 attendees that year. For those interested in more apple details, our 2018 tasted featured 77 varieties, each of them ranked and depicted here.