Shinano Gold / シナノゴールド りんご
The Shinano Gold apple is a popular variety in Japan, and is mostly produced in the Iwate and Nagano prefectures. This freckled golden-yellow apple grows to a massive 350g (compared to a standard apple weighing 150g) and is actually a hybrid between a Golden Delicious and a Chiaki千秋, one of Japan’s original varieties. Its taste is a perfect balance of delicate sweetness and a hint of bright tartness. The Shinano Gold is a refreshingly juicy and crisp treat, that as an added bonus, reveals a mouth-watering aroma when cut open.
Unsurprisingly with the delicious qualities of the Shinano Gold, this variety has gained international popularity, and has even been introduced in Europe, where it is grown under the name “Yello”. As for the ones produced in Iwate, however, their harvesting season is at the peak of Autumn. Starting at the end of October and lasting a full month until the end of November, the Shinano Gold flood the region with a warm golden hue in the trees, before finally arriving at the market.
Luckily for those buying these at the store, Shinano Gold apples retain their signature firm crunch for quite a long time. While fresher is always better, there is no need to be alarmed if the apples have been sitting in the fridge for a bit. Instead of its sweetness fading, it is actually the Shinano Gold’s tartness that becomes milder with age.
[Note] Even as the Shinano Gold can stay crisp for long durations, it is highly recommended for them to be kept refrigerated. This preserves their freshness and signature taste for which the apple growers of Iwate are renowned for producing.