Apples get a lot of love—passion even. Favorite varieties are defended with vigor as if snack time were the Ninth Circuit Court. Some apples get lavished with adjectives that rival those of a sommelier at Le Cirque.
Lee Walker has been farming with his family in their Graton, CA, apple orchard his whole life, except for a tour in the army and a few years playing pro baseball. Lee has kept growing Gravenstein apples through both the thick and the thin-skinned times of the apple business.
“We’ve been seeing for a long time that if we could just hang in there, the apple business would be[come] a good business,” said Lee. “And now Gravensteins are a specialty item!”
The Gravenstein Apple is dear to many apple lovers for its tart taste and superior juice, sauce, and pie abilities, but it is especially dear to the residents of Sebastopol, CA (Sonoma County) where the apple is grown in the U.S.