Has anyone used Hooples to make cider? Tom Burford’s book does not list that as a major use for it but since many rave about the intense, complex taste it seemed like a logical candidate. Ideas?
I’ve wondered that too. It seems like a lot of russets do well in cider, as long as they’re not too dry and can produce some juice. I plan on trying it in a year or two when my tree has enough production.
Golden Delicious is a decent cider apple, so I imagine HAG would be good too.
I haven’t tried my HAG yet (fresh or in cider) but I’m hoping it would be good for a sweeter hard cider base.
OK then I’ll plan on grafting it in several friends’ small cider orchards plus these in the next few years: Hewes, Yates, Gilpin, Wickson, Royal LT, Swiss LT, Grimes. Although I’ve had bad fireblight experience with Grimes so may skip it.
I don’t see any bittersweet apples on your list, that’s a catagory that is good to have 20-40% of in a (hard)cider orchard.
@jesse Thanks for that. Please suggest a bittersweet or two that might have some blight resistance.
Dabinett is a popular one that is considered pretty productive and annual bearing with “considerable” (?) FB tolerance.
Good question, you are growing in the mid-Mid-Atlantic region? Maybe Vintage Virginia Apples may be a good resource. Looking at my New Cider Maker’s Handbook (great reference btw), I see that Chuck Shelton of VVA does not include any bittersweet apples in his recommended variety list. Harrison, Hewe’s and Wickson Crabs are the most tannic of his rec’s, but both latter two come with a hefty dose of acid. Minimizing acid % is a challenge with dessert apples in hard cider and why using sweet and bittersweet apples is necessary imo. Harrison could be the way to go…a real heirloom American hard cider variety. Yarlington Mills and Dabinet are two of the most widely promoted and utelized of the English bittersweet apples here in the US, but I am not sure of how blight resistant or adapted to your region they are.
Thanks, great info. I do like an acid bite that makes your mouth water. I’m in Fire Blight Central AKA Eastern Shore Maryland.