I live north of Chicago. This weekend, I found a hobbyist apple grower who grows the Arkansas Black apple variety. This was the first time I have encountered this apple. It was very dark, skin a bit on the tough side. The apple's flavor reminded me of red delicious, which is not my favorite. This apple's origin is supposed to be the winesap apple.
I googled information on the Arkansas Black. They said it is an apple which matures late in October. This is mid-September but it appears mature, or maybe they are being picked prematurely? Of course, we are much further north so our growing season is coming to a close, though mid-October is still before our average frost date of late October.
AS I said earlier, I am not crazy about the flavor --- which just may be my answer. However, I keep wondering if it is being picked too early. Also I found an article commenting the flavor mellows during their storage period.
Annually, I buy 1-2 bushels of locally grown Macintosh for apple sauce and Jonathons for pies and cakes. It was suggested this apple variety was suitable for cider, apple sauce and baking. Just from its texture, I assume it is better for baking rather than sauce.
Since this is a new variety for me, could someone with experience with this variety comment how they use this apple. I like trying new varieties but as I preserve I like to know more before investing my time to prepare a bushel or more.
Thanks in advance.