Week 11, 2016
Spring is clearly just around the corner as the first British strawberries arrive in retailers. They are still low in volume and the majority of the fruit are arriving from Morocco and Spain, as are raspberries and blueberries. The southern hemisphere autumn is also bearing its fruits as South African pears, Williams Bon Cretian, Flamingo, Packhams Triumph and AbatÃ© FÃ©tÃ¨l, and small volumes of Satsumas are appearing on sale.
FOUR FRUIT with FABULOUS FLAVOUR:
- Mandarins â€“ Nadorcott, Orri and Golden Nugget
- Oranges â€“Tarocco from Sicily; Lane Late from Spain
- Grapes â€“ Muscat from Chile
- Mango â€“ Nam Dok Mae from Thailand
Mandarins: Southern hemisphere Satsumas are just starting with some delicious, though pricy, samples seen in M&S from South Africa: bursting with juice and that metallic sweetness which is so attractive.
The late season European mandarins continue to deliver good sweetness, but are starting to lose their acid balance. Pick of the bunch are Golden Nugget (Asda), Nadorcott, Tangold and Orri.
Oranges: Italian Tarocco blood oranges are still available, along with the more tangy Moro, Sanguinello and Spanish Sanguinelli. Navel oranges, such as Lane Late and Navelate are also very good at the moment.
Valencia Lates are appearing in stores from Spain and Egypt, so be aware that these are quite different to Navels, with more tartness and chewiness.
Grapes: Sweet Celebration, Sable and Melody from South Africa continue to be my favourites, but the deliciously fragrant and soft Muscat from Chile can be found in M&S and Sainsburys: a lovely rose-tinted alternative.
Mango: The delicious Thai mango, Nam Dok Mae is now available in Asda and M&S: quite a treat at Â£2.50!
Avocado: Israeli Fuerte is now available in Waitrose to add to the choice of green-skin avocados (with Pinkerton, which also appears in Sainsbury and Tesco occasionally), both with light, refreshing texture and flavour. The majority of Hass is now from Spain and Israel, with some late season Chilean and Columbian fruit also available.
Grapefruit: The Florida Pink, Ruby Red, is sweet, juicy, flavoursome, and available in most stores at decent prices. Israeli Sunrise is also available, but the more tangy Spanish and Turkish Star Ruby is being offered as stocks dwindle.
Plums: Angelino plums from South Africa have started to appear, which is a sure sign that late season is upon us, but many stores are selling African Delight, which is worth a try.
Apples: Northern hemisphere apples are still in great condition due to modern storage techniques. The only noticeable change is a slight reduction in choice on sale as volumes of some of the newer varieties dwindle.
Pears: Rocha is still widely available, and Comice and AbatÃ© FÃ©tÃ¨l can still be found from English and European sources. New season AbatÃ© FÃ©tÃ¨l from South Africa are in M&S.
Â©Good Fruit Guide 2016. Recommendations on fruit varieties and types with the very best taste are personal to the editor of Good Fruit Guide, and do not attempt to be exhaustive or supported by verifiable consumer research. The highlighting of fruit with the very best taste in the opinion of the editor is not intended as a judgement on the taste of varieties and types of fruit not mentioned.