Jonagold apples are large and often irregular in shape. Their base color is yellow, with reddish stripes. Jonagolds may not be as pretty as some other apples, but their excellent taste has made them a top seller in Europe. They ripen mid-season in September.
History: The Jonagold variety was developed by New York State’s Geneva Station in the late 1950s and released for commercial use in 1968. It is a cross between Jonathan and Golden Delicious, and the apple retains important characteristics from both parents.* Because of its large size, some attempts have been made to find mutations, or “sports,” that produce smaller fruit. Rubinstar Jonagold, developed by Herr Nursery in Germany is one of these sports. We grow both standard and Rubinstar Jonagolds. In our experience they are all huge.
Taste Profile: Jonagolds retain taste characteristics from both parents. As a result they have a well-balanced sweet-tart flavor that makes them excellent for eating raw and in salads. They have a yellow flesh and are crisp and juicy when freshly picked. Jonagolds keep well for up to two months, after which they tend to lose their crispness, especially when used for cooking.
Suggested Uses: Excellent eating apple by itself or served with a mild cheese. Good for a medium-strength cider. They also retain their flavor and texture in baking. Fine for a lighter applesauce or apple pie.
*From Roger Yepsen, Apples. New York, W. W. Norton, 1994. p. 142.