Yosemite Gold Rush

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Prospecting for gold always makes me hungry. Panning for flakes gets me thinking about crispy corn cereal and managing a sluice box always leaves me craving a juice box. It’s been a long time since anyone struck a million dollar nugget, but The FruitGuys are serving up something for West Coast customers to stake their claims on this week—Yosemite Gold Mandarins from Friend’s Ranch, in Ojai, CA. And don’t worry about getting double-crossed and having your claim jumped by some varmint, Yosemite Gold is the product of a famous TRIPLE cross between Tangor, Encore, and Dancy mandarin varieties. They are fairly large, seedless and typically very easy to peel, but watch out for the juice! We guarantee your taste buds will strike it rich with each golden section you pop into your mouth. Most citrus varieties peak during the winter months, but Yosemite Gold is a late variety—it’s just coming online for the season. If you want to catch a real dose of California Gold Fever, try to figure out how much your Yosemite Gold Mandarin would be worth if it were boring old inedible gold, and not such a delicious treat. (Try not to get juice all over the office postal scale.) Gold is measured on a standard based on grains, pennyweights, and troy ounces. An international troy ounce is about ten percent heavier than the more common international avoirdupois ounce. Here’s a quick conversion table for you:

1 grain = 0.0021 troy ounce (1grain = 0.0023 ounces)
24 grains = 1 pennyweight = 0.05 troy oz. = 0.055 avoirdupois oz.
20 pennyweights = 1.0 troy oz. = 1.097 avoirdupois oz.

And let’s not forget about the East Coast, land of the golden rising sun, and the Midwest, home to golden (amber) waves of grain. East coasters will get a delicious golden Tommy Atkins Mango in their crates this week, and Midwest customers will have a chance to enjoy some late season honey tangerines and blueberries. Remember to check your full regional mix here. Enjoy and be fruitful!

Still starving for golden trivia? Me too. The specific gravity of gold is 19.3, which means a quart container of gold weighs 19.3 times as much as a quart of water. In comparison, lead has a specific gravity of 11. So gold is nearly twice as heavy as lead, and about a bazillion times more valuable—unless you’re out alone in the desert, in which case you might want to travel light with water. Gold is also extremely malleable and ductile. It can be hammered so thin that 250,000 sheets would only be an inch high. Also, a single ounce of gold can be stretched into a filament 35 miles long. Whoa!

- Jeff Koelemay


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