As the Nicholson Family has blossomed over the past five decades, so has the land that is home to their orchards. This year will mark the debut of Red Jacket’s first private label apple, the SenecaCrisp™. Named for the lush region from which it originated, this apple was hand-selected by the third-generation owners of Red Jacket Orchards. Twins, Brian and Mark Nicholson, studied at Cornell University – Marketing and Horticulture/Pomology respectively. Mark studied under renowned Professor of Ecological Orchard Management, Ian Merwin. It was Merwin who would later supply the Nicholson’s with bud wood to create a 10-acre heirloom planting. Ten years and counting, the brothers continue to hone their craft and successfully harvest 10 ancient varieties on modern stock roots.
For a decade, at each harvest, they found themselves focusing on a particular strain that was rich in flavor with a texture similar to that of the famed Honey Crisp. This unique variety had failed commercial introduction but had a impressive lineage, born in the Finger Lakes, parenting the Honeycrisp, and now growing amazingly well along the slopes of Seneca Lake. Upon further research, it was found that this apple had originated from the Northern Spy, which itself originated just 20 miles from Red Jacket Orchards, and was a star variety more than 100 years ago. SenecaCrisp’s™ lovely lineage coupled with a fervent demand for its fresh, vibrant flavor ensures that the apple tastes as good as it looks.
Red Jacket aims to capture the unparalleled beauty of autumn in Upstate New York, by showcasing the SenecaCrisp™ apple – classy and modern, but with a nod toward its rich heritage. Your first bite of a SenecaCrisp™ will invoke the spirit of picking an apple from the tree and experiencing that vivid burst of fall freshness. Harvest begins in mid-October, and availability for purchase will be limited to NYC residents and businesses through FreshDirect and our GrowNYC Farmers Market locations, and locally, in Geneva, NY at the Red Jacket Orchards Farm Store.