Heirloom Apple Tasting

Friday October 13, 2017: 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm -- Westgate Branch: West Side Room

This event is intended for all ages

Farmers once grew thousands of varieties of apples. In modern times, most of these old heirloom varieties are extremely rare, and are now grown by only a small handful of farms.

We're taste-testing some fantastic heirloom apples—all grown right here in Michigan! Join us to discover a diverse array of sweet, sour, crisp, soft, gnarly, delicious, and straight-up weird apple varieties!

AADL staff will be on hand to explain a bit of the history of each selection. Here are some of the heirloom apples that we expect to sample:

[note: varieties sampled may be subject to change]

Cox’s Orange Pippin:
Origin: 1830, in England. A highly regarded dessert apple, the Cox is best eaten or used for cider. Generally on the small side, it is complex in flavor and sweet. It is not well suited for cooking or baking.

Esopus Spitzenburg:
Origin: before 1790, in New York. Like many russetted apples, the Spitzenburg is crisp and sweet, with a vaguely pear-like flavor. It is reputed to be Thomas Jefferson’s favorite apple.

Northern Spy:
Origin: 1800’s, in New York. Probably the best pie apple ever. A great combination of sweet and acidic, the Northern Spy is highly sought-after by bakers in-the-know

Calville Blanc d’hiver:
Origin: 1700’s, in France. An excellent baking apple, the Calville holds up well in the oven, and is a satisfying mix of crisp and tart. The Calville Blanc is unusually high in vitamin C.


heirloom apples

i've wanted to try many of these apple varieties but do not know where to get them

RE: Heirloom Apples

Thanks for your interest in this event! This year we will be using heirloom apple varieties from Alber Orchard & Cider Mill in Manchester, MI. Here is their website, if you have any interest:


Of course we hope to see you at our event too. It might present a good chance for you to try some varieties before you go out and buy them.

-Alex Pierzchala, The Ann Arbor District Library

Michigan Apples

Great to see apples grown in Michigan. I haven't heard of most of them.

RE: Michigan Apples

The idea behind this event is that we will be to introduce the folks in the room to varieties that they would not have necessarily heard of. We think that the average person will be unfamiliar with most of these apples.