Listener Favorite – Apple at my Core from Episode 618
Hop in my apple cart and meet my favorite New York State apple. We’ll see a cider press and learn some facts about the fruit over gifted to teachers. A favorite fills in for the fall season.
Listener Favorite – Apple at my Core from Episode 618
[START OF RECORDING]
SCOOTER: Friends beyond the binary, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, and my patrons…patrons, you’re the apple of my eye, you’re the colors of the autumn leaves, you’re the autumnal beauty that really warms my heart…and the seasons change, and this is a…I always talk about self-care, and when you hear a repeat of a show, it’s because I’m practicing self-care. This will come out in the free feed in a couple weeks but because you’re patrons, I’m adding an extra episode, so you’re getting a twofer instead of a one-fer. So, you’ll get the Apple at my Core episode and then I’ll put Peeping Leaves on at the end to give you a little extra-long episode of Sleep With Me. Thanks, patrons.
INTRO: [INTRO MUSIC] Alright, hey, are you up all night tossing, turning, mind racing? Trouble getting to sleep? Trouble staying asleep? Well, welcome. This is Sleep With Me, the podcast that puts you to sleep. We do it with a bedtime story. Alls you need to do is get in bed, turn out the lights, and press play. I’m gonna do the rest. What I’m going to attempt to do is create a safe place where you could set aside whatever’s keeping you awake, whether it’s thoughts, feelings, physical sensations. Whatever’s keeping you awake, whether it’s something inside, outside, you’re traveling. Whatever it is, I’d like to keep you company, I’d like to take your mind off it, I’d like to at least virtually make you feel welcome. I’m really glad you’re listening and I hope I can help you fall asleep.
What I’m going to attempt to do…I think I said that already, is I have this nice, safe place here. Perfect temperature; might be warm, might be cool depending on your likes. May have a nightlight; may not. But the main thing it has is a warm, kind presence. What I’m gonna do is send my voice across the deep, dark night, use lulling, soothing, creaky, dulcet tones, pointless meanders, tangents…oh boy, do I have tangents. Tangentially, let me tell you about my tangents. Anyway, I was thinking of this other thing. It was like joke temps; there will be a few of those.
The joke temps…you know, figure skating…is that the one or is it gymnastics where they…I guess on the floor routine in gymnastics; maybe on the…maybe all gymnastics…I think and figure skating, you submit your routine and then they say okay, well, this is the number of possible points you could get depending on the degree of…oh, the degree of difficulty. That was the word I was looking for, or phrase, I guess, in this case. Any jokes I go for will be a low-degree of difficulty. So, don’t worry about it. No…well, maybe the feelings of the words used in the jokes; their feelings will be heard. The words used in the jokes, their feelings could be deflated. But anyway, I’m glad you’re here, and I’d like to help you fall asleep. If you’re new, a couple things to note.
One, this is a podcast you don’t really need to listen to. It’s here to keep you company, to be your bore-friend, your bore-bae, your bore-bud, your bore-cuz, your bore-sib, your bore-bestie, ‘cause I’m the kinda bestie…I’ll tell you everything. Like, I’ll be in there, I’ll be hugging the pillow, I’ll be like okay, you won’t believe…but I’m the one bestie…okay…oh, just in case you don’t know these…this terminology; best friend eva…ever. Whatever you’re comfortable with. Believe me, there’s a very wide, diverse range of listeners. So, whether you used to read Teen Beat or Tiger Beat or Kung-fu Weekly, whether you used to watch Washington Week or you read any of those…The Economist. I know we got a lot of Economist listeners…readers who listen. New York…whatever it is.
If you’re a fan of Carrot Top or the carrot…you know, Carrot Weekly or The Onion…what was…we could be besties. I guess that was…I’d like to apply to be your bestie. But this is a different kind of bestie ‘cause usually it’s a two-way…they call that a gab-fest. I think Slates got that down. This is not a gab-fest. It’s kinda like…I guess I’d be gabbing. I guess it’s more of a blab…blab-bless…blah-blah. Yeah, more like that; blah-blah. It doesn’t have the same ring as Slate’s gab-fest, but it does…Drew’s blah-bless. But so, what I’ll do is…we’re besties. Usually if you’re a bestie, you have a little two-way gab-fest, and you go back and forth. Or if you’re best friends, if you’re more comfort…or you say whoa, dude; we’re bruhs. Okay, cool. We’re having a…we’re bruh-besties. That’s fine, too.
We’ll…I don’t know; what do we do? We chew the fat, right? We say yo, check it. But usually that’s all…two-way situation. In this situation, I just do most of the talking and you don’t have to listen ‘cause…I mean, even sometimes when your friends…let’s be honest; we’re besties. We can talk about these things. Sometimes our non-besties, they can be a little bit…they can go on and on. You say, holy cow. What…I said, what are you talking about? Like, I find Monaco interesting, but I don’t know what this metaphor you’re making about the history of Monaco and the Medicis…I love the Medicis; believe me, and the modern icon…you lost me at iconography when you said that in the same sentence as economics. But you can’t say that, so you’re saying hm, oh wow, really? Was that Lorenzo?
They say no, no, no. The other de’ Medicis. I say yeah, I’m kidding. Oh, go on. Tell me more. But this podcast, you don’t gotta do any of that. I’ll be going on like that. I’ll say, I’m a man; I don’t know my…something from my de’ Medici. I don’t know my…trying to think of some…something…my DuPonts from my de’ Medicis. I don’t know. I wish I had something better. But either way, I’ll be doing the blah-blabbing, and you’ll be doing the sleeping. It’s that easy. You just kick back and let me ramble, and you don’t have to listen. I guess that’s what I meant to say, but it took me about five minutes to get that in. You know, ‘cause I want to…I want you to feel like we could be whatever kind of besties you want to be.
Here’s the thing, partners that may be listening or real, actual human best friends, or mammal best friends or other best friends, pets…I call you pets. You don’t have to feel threatened. I’m a bore-bestie. It’s different. I think you could figure that out. So, you don’t need to listen to me. That’s that. Also, I’ll be here for an hour, so there’s no pressure to fall asleep. This…that’s another thing; when…with best friends, there could be pressure to listen. Or you say well, I don’t want to…I know we’re going to the Greatest Fun-Time Fun Fest Ever. I don’t want to pressure you to have fun. It’s just the Greatest Fun-Time Fun Fest Ever. I don’t know about you, but that sounds…I said well, this…I mean, I’m supposed to be…have fun, then. But I tend to be a big grouch.
Is this…when you say the Greatest Fun-Time Fun Fest Ever, this is the conference and the economic impacts of iconography of the Medicis…in…what…was there Bitcoin in that description, too? ‘Cause that…and then something about agrarian something or other. That’s the Super-Fun Fun-Time Fun Fest. I’m supposed to have the funnest time ever at…that’s a lot of pressure. This podcast; no pressure. You don’t need to listen, no pressure to fall asleep. I’ll be here for about an hour to keep you company, to take your mind off of stuff, to barely entertain you, mildly engage you. Tonight we’ll be talking apple…I guess we won’t be talking about Apple phones or Apple products; we’ll be talking about apples, actual apples. A-P-P-L-E, the kind that come in trees. That’s it. So, I’ll be here for an hour.
Oh, structurally for the show…and I’m working on the structure. I’m working on slimming it down. Usually the first six minutes are business, but it’s getting shorter, and that’s how we keep the show free. So, it’s kind of essential if you’re a regular listener to know that, but if you’re new, not important. Then we have the intro, which we’re in the middle of here. Usually there’s about twelve to fourteen minutes of me rambling and explaining, setting the parameters of bore-best friendship, and saying I’m…if you’re a…if you’re enthusiastic about [00:10:00] agrarian Medici iconography or iconography, you know…these are…like the 99% Invisible emoji episode; you want to pay attention to that. This one, my words are just barely related to one another. So, I think you figured that out, though.
You’re a really smart person with those…all those interests, super-fun interests. So fun. So, anyway, I’m here to keep you company and take your mind off of stuff while you fall asleep. I’m your friend. The reason I make the show; I’ve been there. Oh boy, have I been there. I’ve been there waking up at 2:00 AM or going to bed at 10:00 PM and tossing and turning. I really, truly believe you deserve a good night’s sleep. It’s a world out there, a whole, wide world with a lot of stuff out there, and especially in the stuffing season. I want you rested so you could flourish, so you can live your life, so you can smile and feel the warm sunshine on your face. You really do deserve that. So, I hope I can help. Now, I…this podcast doesn’t work for everybody. In fact, there’s a portion of people that it just doesn’t work for.
But for most people, it takes a couple of episodes ‘cause it’s so different. Even tomorrow, you’ll try to be parsing it out. You’ll say, what was he talking about? Scoots, he’s a real Renaissance man, as in the new Renaissance where you say, what…like, no, I stayed at a Residence Inn. That’s what I said; not Renaissance man. He stayed at a Residence Inn once. Actually, no; I just looked that up on the internet. I looked at the rates. I said nope, Hampton Inn for me, or whatever that other one is. I think that’s the one I can stay at. I’d say, quality, comfort, clarion. Which one’s the one that…I think…red…is there a motel called the Red Barn? ‘Cause that’s usually…that’s right in my rate structure. Anyway, I’m glad you’re here. I hope I can keep you company and I really hope, I really yearn, and I work really hard ‘cause I hope I can help you fall asleep, so give the show a few tries. I hope it helps you. Goodnight.
Well, hey, everybody. I’m a New York State apple and I’m glad to be here to help you fall asleep tonight. Pleased to meet you. My name you’ll be finding out soon. Old Scoots asked me to come by and talk to you about apples. Not just any apples; New York State apples, because that’s the kinda apple Scoots grew up with. He said man, I missed apple-picking season. I said, frowny apple face. You did, Scoots. He said well, maybe I could make it up to you apples. Then he said…tried to make a few different jokes about be…us apples being the apple of his eye. But really, you listeners, you’re the apple of his eye. You might say well, you don’t sound like a New York State apple to me. I’d say well, I just had a glass of Country Time Lemonade, and that’s why I sound this way.
But let’s talk about apples in general, and then I’m gonna take you on a…we’ll see where this goes ‘cause Scoots, he loves…he said hey, let’s talk apples and see how it goes. That’s Sleep With Me. So, he said start with some basics over at Wikipedia. The apple is a Malus pumila, erroneously called Malus domestica. It’s a deciduous tree related to the rose family, and it’s best known for its me; sweet, pomaceous fruit. Bodacious and pomaceous; the apple. Worldwide…and we’re the most widely-grown species in the genus Malus, and Malus does not stand for ‘bad’ to my knowledge. We originated in Central Asia. Wild ancestor; Malus sieversii. You could still find us there today, but we’ve been growing for thousands of years in Asia and Europe and brought to North America by Europeans.
Oh boy, are we big in mythology. You probably already know that, though. Apple trees; there was once a tall tale about Johnny Appleseed, and apple trees can grow large if grown from seed. But nowadays, where cultivars are propagated by grafting rootstalks to control the size of the resulting tree…there’s about 7,500 known cultivars of apples, ranging in desired…what do you want out of your apples? Various taste is…taste and use; cooking, eating raw, and cider production. Yeah, we get…we deal with things in organic and non-organic means. They just started recently tweaking with our genomes, and we’ll skip over that. We can be from 1.8 to 4.6 meters tall. That’s six to fifteen feet to you in the US, of New York State and the rest of the US. Thirty-six feet, twelve meters in the wild.
We blossom in the spring simultaneously with a budding of our leaves. We got spurs and long shoots, beautiful flowers, if you don’t mind me saying; five-petaled with an inflorescence, with a cyme of four to six flowers. The central flower of our inflorescence is called the king bloom. It opens first and can develop a larger fruit. Our fruit…my partners and I, we mature in late autumn…late summer or autumn, and most commercial growers, they shoot for an apple that’s seven to eight centimeters in diameter, 2.75 to 3.2 inches. Some people, they like their apples big. Some people like them small. The apple business is finicky. Apple-eaters are finicky folks, and that’s a good thing ‘cause it keeps the apple-growers on our toes. Me, I’m just living my life.
Now, you say, how did you get to be a representative of the New York State apples? I’d say well, apples are one of nature’s miracles, so why don’t you just go ask mother nature? Also, I’m a friend of Bernie the Butterfly’s, but he won’t be appearing on this episode. Now, we talked about our wild ancestors. We’ll skip over my gene…you know, our genome. You could check out Wikipedia for our history and Germanic pagism…paganism, Greek mythology, Christian art. You could look up our 7,500 known cultivars, and you could read about all the places in the world they’re grafting us and planting us and letting us grow. If you’re looking for a nice word, though, it’s rootstalk. That’s the bottom of the graft that you use to produce a wide variety of trees. Yeah.
Now, I’ll tell you what; even in New York State, we got great love for the Excelsior Experiment Station at the University of Minnesota. I think they might be the Golden Gophers, but to us, they’re the apples of our eyes, us apples. But of course, you want…you that like those R-rated movies, you want to get to the good stuff, and that’s pollination. I know. Apples, we’re self-incompatible, so we must cross-pollinate to develop fruit, so it’s not easy. It’s just not as easy out there in the wild as you would think. We need pollinators, and who pollinates? Honeybees in particular. There’s orchard mason bees; they can be supplemental pollinators, but we gotta get some more bumblebee queens, so keep an eye on those bees, because we need them, apples. Unlike the creator of this podcast, we can’t self-pollinate.
Ba-boom. Now, you want to talk about maturation and harvest. We get the biggest when we’re grown on the same rootstalk as our tree. We can get…our trees can get very large, and depends on the density, obviously, how much water and nutrition we’re getting. But typically, a mature tree can go anywhere from forty…200 kilograms…that’s 88 to 441 pounds. That’s each year, but some years it’s zero when it’s a tough year. Sometimes we just know when the tree needs a break. You’ve probably seen the apples…the special apple ladders. Those are 3-point ladders that are made to fit among the branches. You probably have gone…you may have gone apple-picking; you may not have. I’ll tell you what; next year, pick an apple. We kinda like it.
But hey, do us a favor; [00:20:00] spread our seeds around and support your local grower. Or if you can’t do that, find the place with the most nostalgia, and maybe pick yourself up a caramel apple. You deserve it. Now, how about storing apples? Well, we like the…we can last some months in a controlled atmosphere chamber with delayed ripening. We could use some higher concentrations of carbon dioxide and some prior air filtration, balance out that ethylene that gets us ripe. Then when you take us out of storage, our ripening will continue. Now, if you got us at home, that’s a argument, ‘cause the guy that makes this podcast, his keeps apples in his fridge for a long time. But most people…about two weeks in the coolest part of their refrigerator.
Granny Smiths and Fujis, they…maybe those are the ones the podcast guy keeps in his fridge, ‘cause they last a lot longer. But I’m neither of those, so there’s a little hint on my name, is neither Granny Smith nor Fuji. Now, we’ll skip over these pests, but I’ll just tell you three of the biggest ones; mildew, aphids, and the old apple scab. You might say, where…here in the US of A, we make the most apples — not to have to be afraid to disagree with you — by a lot. China produces 48% of the world’s apples. But you do in the US produce about 5.2 million tons. China; about almost 41 million tons. Coming in third is Poland at 3.2 million. Then Turkey at 2.5, and Italy at 2.5 million tons. You might say, is a apple a day keep…keep good things coming, or what? Well, I’ll tell you what; a apple a day should probably make you say yay.
A typical apple serving, according to this Wikipedia article; 242 grams of…is how much it weighs. 126 calories, and a moderate amount of dietary fibre. Just some trace nutrients and vitamins and elements; nothing major. But it’s got that crunch, it’s got a little sugar in there, and there’s plenty of ways to eat an apple. But hey, you know what? Before you say we don’t have anything, we do have a rich source of phytochemicals including flavonoids and other phenolic compounds in our skin, core, and pulp that may have unknown health benefits. Those phenolic compounds, including poly-phenol oxidase, are the driving force behind why apples turn brown. So, that’s a good, interesting thing. So, keep an eye out for that.
Then the proverb ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ dates all the way from 19th century Wales, according to Caroline Taggart, the author of An Apple A Day: Old-Fashioned Proverbs and Why They Still Work. The original phrase quoting Wikipedia quoting Taggart says eating an apple on going to bed, you’ll keep the doctor from earning his bread. Then in the 19th and 20th century, it was changed to an apple a day, no doctor to pay, or an apple a day sends the doctor away, going back to the phrasing we have now, in 1822. But you might say, what’s your name again? I’ll say well, I’ll give you some more hints over at newyorkapplecountry.com where you could start planning your 2018 leaf-peeping and apple-picking tours, ‘cause the apple varieties of New York State are right on here.
I don’t know if you know this, but New York grows more apple varieties than any other state; nearly 700 growers, 10 million plus trees. We produce enough apples to bake 500 million apple pies. You got a lot of great choices for eating, snacking, baking, cooking, sauces, and desserts. So, let’s run through some apples and you could see if you can guess my name. Twenty Ounce, Acey Mac, Braeburn, Cameo…you’re gonna hear a lot of these famous people. Cortland, Crispin…I mean, how many famous people we already been down? Empire…we got…let’s see, we got a Empire TV show, Crispin Glover, Cortland’s a great city; been famous. Cameo; famous singer. Braeburn; I think that’s…was a president one time. Acey Mac’s got a new album out with Twenty Ounce, so there you go for those ones.
Fortune; that’s another one. Fortune favors the bold. Fortune’s crisp with a spicy flavor. I forgot; I’m sorry, everybody. Empire is sweet, tart, and juicy. Crispin; sweet and very juicy. Cortland; sweet, juicy, and tender. Oh, boy. Cameo; tart, sweet, and crispy. Braeburn; sweet, tangy, and juicy. Acey Mac; sweet, tart, and juicy. Twenty Ounce is firm, juicy, and tart. Where did we leave off? Oh, Fuji, another famous one. It’s very sweet and very juicy. Gala or Gala; sweet, juicy, and crisp. Ginger Gold; I think there’s more than five hundred songs written about the Ginger Gold apple. It’s sweet and mildly tart. Golden Delicious; mild and sweet and juicy. Honeycrisp. My name’s not Honeycrisp but I may have called a few people in my life Honeycrisp. Sweet, tart, and crisp. Now, this one’s one word, so don’t get tricked; Idared.
That’s someone I’ll…Idared; juicy, tart, and firm. Jersey Mac; another famous singer. Sweet, tart, and juicy. This one’s another one-worder; Jonagold. Honey-sweet and juicy. Jonamac; firm and sweet. Macoon…Macoun…I’m not sure of that one. Never met this apple before. Extra-sweet and tender, though. McIntosh; sweet and tangy. Paula Red; tart, juicy, and crisp. Red Delicious; that’s a famous apple. Overrated, no offense. But, sweet, juicy, and crisp. Rome…Rome if you want to; mildly tart and firm. The rest of them are trademark names which confuses me as an apple, ‘cause I say what the heck is that? So, that’s over at newyorkapplecountry.com. Let’s bust out some facts here. New York really is the Big Apple. Only the second-largest apple-producing state in the country.
Only Washington produces more apples than the Empire State. Michigan ranks third, with Pennsylvania and California rounding out the top five. If you’re doing a report, this is newyorkapplecountry.com, and they actually have the primary sources listed. New York produces two point…29.5 million bushels of apples annually. Just so you know, when you’re planning your leaf-peeping, there’s a branch of apples in 41,000 acres, six major production districts around the entire state. Champlain Valley, Eastern Hudson Valley, Western Hudson Valley, Central New York…that’s where Scooter and I are from…Lake Country, and the Niagara Frontier. The top ten apple-growing counties are Wayne, Ulster, Orleans, Niagara, Clinton, Columbia, Monroe, Orange, Onondaga, and Duchess. Now, how many growers are there?
There’s 694 commercial apple growers in New York State. What do you say we get that to 700 in 2018? How about jobs? How about industry, huh, governor? 10,000 direct agricultural jobs, 7,500 indirect jobs involved with the industry, and a thousand other…thousands of other indirect jobs with supplies and equipment. On the average, 13.25 million bushels are sold as fresh market fruit. That’s 53% of the production. The remainder, which is 11.75 million, is processed into juice, cider, and canned products including sauce, slices, and pie filling, and other processed apple products. You might even say who are…David Letterman was from New York and he had a top ten list; top ten apples…varieties…varietals in New York State are McIntosh, [00:30:00] Empire, Red Delicious, Cortland, Golden Delicious, Rome, Idared, Crispin, Paula Red, and Gala.
I don’t know if you call it that…number one was, but pleased to meet you; I am the number-one or the number-ten varietal depending on what list you’re looking at. I’m McIntosh; I’m a McIntosh apple. Pleased to meet you. But you might have some more questions. Now, some of you might be asking why do apples wax? We’re waxed to maintain freshness to make us look better. That’s a natural wax that’s washed off at the packing house, food grade wax. Sometimes we get a milky film on us when the food grade wax coating gets exposed to condensation or moisture. You can just wash that off with plain water. You might say, you know what? Those Rome apples, sometimes they have a deep-red pigmentation and sometimes they have red streaks right in the flesh.
Yeah, sometimes we’re so bright red, our pigmentation leaks right into the white flesh of the apple. But that’s totally normal stuff. Now, you already know that we’re a member of the rose family of plants, along with pears, peaches, plums, and cherries. I don’t know if that makes us all stone fruits or not. But the science of apple-growing is called pomology. We come in red, green, and yellow, all shades. We’re still picked by hand, and Americans eat more apples per capita than any other fruit. In 2012, 13…15.9 pounds of fresh apples, and 29.4 pounds of processed apples for a total of 44.3 pounds. You might say what about the world’s largest apple peel? Well, that was created by Kathy Waffler in Madison, October 16th, 1976, Rochester, New York. Kathy Waffler, Madison. Oh, excuse me.
That apple peel was 172 feet, 4 inches long. She was only sixteen years old at the time, but she grew up to be a sales manager for Apple Tree Nursery. Did you know it takes thirty-three apples to create one gallon of apple cider? 25% of my volume is air, and that’s why I float if you’re bobbing for apples. Apples are grown in thirty-six states, about eighty calories an apple. Five grams of fibre, including pectin, which is the soluble fibre. Most apple blossoms are pink when they open. They gradually transition to white. You might say well, why don’t so many cold states grow apples? ‘Cause we can be grown further north than any other fruit trees ‘cause we bloom in the late spring, minimizing the chance of frost damage. Here’s a fact to lay on you; it takes the energy from fifty leaves to produce one apple.
We’re solar powered, us apples here. We’re the second-most valuable fruit grown in the United States after oranges. 1998 was our boom year; 277.3 million bushels were harvested. Newtown Pippin apples were the first ones exported from America, and they were sent to Benjamin Franklin in London; 19…1768. The first apple nursery was in Flushing, New York, in 1730. George Washington loved pruning apple trees. A peck of apples weighs 10.5 pounds. A bushel of apples weighs 42 pounds and will yield twenty to twenty-four quarts of applesauce. So, you might say hey, McIntosh…and hey, by the way, you can call me Mac. You don’t need to call me Big Mac; just call me Mac. Or…I’d like us to be friends, just like I’m friends with old Scoots.
Once upon a time, he was Little Andy, and every once in a while…not…I’m not sure if he went every year; Little Andy would head out to an apple orchard with his family and he would pick some apples. I observed him, and you might say well, McIntosh, if you’re just…and I’d say, don’t overthink it. My root stack runs deep. Maybe understanding the Mac…maybe I’m one McIntosh; maybe I’m all. Maybe I’m both. You might say hold on, Mac; so, you’re saying you’re a collective? I’d say no, no, no. I’m just saying I’m just here to talk to you about apples, not about science. I thought even Scoots said no existentialism at bedtime. But where Scoots and his family would go was a apple orchard called Beak and Skiff. Both of these companies should be paying him, I guess; New York apples and this orchard.
But it’s not anywhere near where he lives, so he don’t mind none. Beak and Skiff’s been around since 1911. Little Andy would go out there and pick some apples. Maybe we’ll go look at some apples in a bit. But it was an orchard in 1911 when George Skiff, an onion farmer from Syracuse, met Andrew Beak, a dairy farmer. They met at one of those farmer’s markets where you and all your neighbors go. They said, let’s get in this…let’s join forces and get in this apple business. Out here on Route 20, where we’re at right now, at least in your imagination…Lafayette, New York, they found the perfect condition for growing apples, and they started right that very year. By 1920, in the 20s and 30s, they had a wholesale business selling apples to grocery stores like Victory, A&P, and small, local grocers.
Now, 1937…those 30s, they were a tough time. We had a drought and we couldn’t grow apples that year. It was a tough year. Didn’t stop then; 1945, we had a big freeze. That was in late spring. No more…no apples that year. Then in 1949, we tried smoke. Smudge pots, they call them, on cold spring mornings to fight off the frost. Ever since then, we’ve been smudging the pots and keeping us here trees…apples and trees warm. Now, those 1950s, those were…that was a time. 1959, we started watering the trees with irrigation methods to increase production. That caused us to have to get bigger apple boxes to store our harvest. Now, innovations continued. It kinda feels like an apple ride, doesn’t it? Like at Epcot Center. The Big Apple. Maybe that’s what we’ll go on next. You’ll climb in a…yeah.
That’s a good idea, Mac. Let’s climb in an apple. Well, let me get through the history here, ‘cause in 1956…this is just the pre-ride. We were fighting the frost and wind ‘cause we’re in a valley, and cold air can settle down here. So, to protect the delicate apple blossoms that become us apples, we were the first orchard in the northeast to use wind machines to move the cold air out of the valley so it wouldn’t damage us blossoms. Over the years, this has saved tens of thousands of apples before we had a chance to grow. In the 1960s we added a controlled atmosphere room so our apples could be stored longer. In 1975 — and this is where Little Andy’s story comes in — we diversified from wholesale to a pick-your-own orchard which has become known as Apple Hill.
Then a few years later, we converted an old dairy barn into the Apple Hill Country Store and Bake Shop. This is where families from Central New York come to pick apples and create memories. In 1979, we began making our first apple cider, and oh boy, does that Andy…he loves Beak and Skiff apple cider. I know he said…California, he said. Well, he also said is this how much apple cider was when I was a kid? ‘Cause it’s expensive. Yes, there’s a big difference between apple cider and apple juice. In 1979, that’s when we started making our apple cider, right down at the Apple Hill Country Store. Wholesale, retail, it blew up. So, then we needed to develop a pasteurization process to extend the shelf life.
But we didn’t want to alter that delicious apple cider flavor, so we were the first to [00:40:00] flash pasteurize fresh cider and distribute it wholesale. You could find it at many of your favorite grocery stores and markets. Then we started selling booze, but Scoots doesn’t want to talk about that. Those are some of our new ventures. But we continue to make advancements and improvements. In 1920…in 2013 we installed 15,000 new trees, renovated our Apple Hill campus to make it an even better experience, and a tasting room, and a cafe. So, yeah. So, that’s a little bit about our history and some of the facts about…around here, these parts. Now I want you to watch your hands and your feet as you step into our giant apples. We call them applemobiles around here.
Two adults and one child per applemobile, and the hand bar will lower on its own. Please face your feet, hands in your lap, and letting that apple…yeah. You’re the apple of our eye. Welcome to the McIntosh New York State Apple Tour here at…including a tour of Beak and Skiff Orchards, but also a tour of just being an apple. It goes a little bit slow here as we enter the winter. The winter months here, you could see, are cold here in Central New York. You could see winter…the ground is frozen and the apples…they’re not on the trees. There’s not much of anything on these apple trees as we head through this orchard here. Have a look around here; you’ll see winter has come to Central New York, and snow.
This is a beta test of our apple ride, so at this point we would have facts about the winter and the snow, or maybe a dramatic visit from a winter queen. There’s one storyline I’ve been pitching to Big Mac. She would say Big Mac, rest for the winter as you wait to become a seedling. Lay dormant and rest as the cambium within you circulates nutrients, and you rest for the winter. But not forever, for winter is a time of rest. She would do that kinda thing. Another thing that some of them are pitching is Farmer Joe. I would say well, how about Farmer Jane? What in the heck? They say, well, how about Farmer…? I said no, forget it. Just go with the Apple Queen, please. Oh, how about Applelina? They say Mac, why don’t you do it? I say, not in the winter. I want to be…have a dramatic introduction, please.
So, then I called Scoots. I said let’s just go rogue and do this on our own. So, they…I don’t think they’ll be super happy with me when they find out, but whatever. I can’t help that I love apples, and I love being an apple. So anyway, you’ll notice…you’ll see some winter birds. That’ll be based on fact. You’ll see other winter animals doing the winter things and running around there, even some not…you say, is that a squirrel? I say yeah, that squirrel did a good job. It must have a nice, warm burrow somewhere. I don’t know what the…maybe the squirrel has a bunch of Fuji apples or something stored up for the winter. Then I’m pitching…’cause I said well, is this gonna be just a static ride through the orchard? Then…so, anyway, I’m…believe me, I’m pitching on something that’s family-friendly but has a little action.
But you know, these companies, they say, what? I’d say, can’t we be a co-op? They say, why do we need an apple ride? I’d say, ‘cause of the life of the apple. Because now that we’re leaving the winter, dramatic music would begin and the…we would have effects ‘cause we’d have a cold effect, and then we would start to warm you up, and we would even have some smell-o-vision coming in. They’d say…you’d say oh boy, it smells like that loamy, wet spring smell. Then we would change over the characters, where the winter queen…Apple Queen; she’d say, and then it was spring. I did say what about Helen Mirren? They said Big Mac, we could only afford you. I’d say well, I’m just an apple. I’m not in a union. I mean, I’ll look into it. But I’d say, I prefer Helen Mirren.
They said, she’s out of our…I’d say, so, does that mean Dame Judi Dench is also outside of price range? What about John Malkovich? They just…they said Mac, please stop coming to these meetings. I say well, I’m the only apple that’s been granted consciousness, so I’m afraid you’re stuck with me. They all sighed. There’s apple barons. Scoots told me not to talk about that, but there are. I was thinking about adding them in the ride in the background with a little foil. Maybe nobody could see them unless I tell you. This is here…I’d like a boy with a newspaper saying extra, extra; spring comes right on time. Then we would show…this would be good ‘cause this would have the conflict where again I say well, spring has arrived. We would show a little bit of the budding and the beginnings.
Then…be hello, military industrial complex will get your due if we can get some cash for this ride. Then we would say…we would talk about the technology part. I’m not anti-technology; this ride’s gonna have technology, and this…we could say this apple ride is driven on apple drive. I don’t even know if we could get Tim Cook. I haven’t even thought about that ‘til just now. I’d like the ride to be solar-powered, but we’ll see about that. But then we would talk about the frost and we would have a fog effect, and then the fan. I also personally think it would be cool if the fan, you know, kicked up the ride to a little bit higher speed where you say, whoa. Actually, it would be…spring would be Act…winter’s Act 1. Spring would be broken into two acts where we’d have the over-climbing of the frost. First we’d show the smudge pots.
They wouldn’t be really smudge…but they’d have the smell, like when you’re in Disney with the dinosaurs and stuff. You say, it smells like burnt something. Then you would go…then we’d have the wind effect, so we’d be saved from the frost. Oh boy, then another smell-o-vision. You go right into the blossom room. Then we would have something kinda showing a cross-cultural celebration of apple blossoms. Again, what I’m pitching that’s falling on deaf ears. We would have a dual on layering of…with…you’d be looking out one side of the ride and as we’re showing these different cultural…worldwide cultures with apple usage and also the mythology of apples and the apple blossoms, we’d also be showing the growth and the budding and the mature…the slow…into summer.
So, we celebrate the history of apples, the human history of apples across the globe. Also some history, so you’d say well, here in Turkey was when the first…and then…so, a very nice thing. Oh, with apple smells. I mean, I’m sorry; apple blossom smells, and lots of those robo figures. They said, we don’t have the budget…I said, budget…this is about the history of apples. This is Mac talking. Then we would roll into summer, but right as we get to summer, we need…you need another twist. So, as we’re going from the myth…like, we’re intertwining the mythology and the history of the progression of apples, and the…what do you call it? The actual maturation of the apple tree. The next thing we would get into would be another thing, like we’d say the…and I like having the paperboy again saying extra, extra; drought.
Then we show more military…then we say hey, look at this aqueduct stuff here. That was the down year. You show people weeping; not my apples. I got no apples this year. So, you show a couple of the droughts, you show the year with…whatever the apple smelt or whatever they called it. Then maybe if we get the rights to a Beach Boys song, you go from the down time…you say well, but technology had its way, just like mother nature. Then we get some heat lamps in there, some beach, some ocean, [00:50:00] families on vacation. We go into the summer. You see some of the summer stuff there, like…but you see the apples growing. At the same time, you gotta layer this stuff together, so we also talk about…maybe you could have the characters doing the exposition. Like, hey Bob, where are you going for work there?
Well, you know, because I’m an engineer, I work on…you know. You show…hey Mary, what…you look super successful. Maybe you even do…I said, how about a high school reunion? They said, where everybody works in the apple industry. I say, exactly. Everybody says awe, shucks. Your kid’s selling these papers for two bits about the apple. But they say yeah, well, I’ve invented a new method to solarize the apple industry. Did you know it takes fifty leaves for one apple? Then you could have…this is when I would also get some of these apple barons in there. You have them…like a juggler, a mom juggler at the reunion, and we just put his name on his name tag, you know, one of the apple barons. Or you just say Mr. Baffo, but we could get his face to look like one of the big apple barons.
That was…that would show summer. Then people could wear shorts; then you know it’s summertime. The Beach Boys…if we can’t get them, just some of that fake surf rock, you know? Boom-ba-da-boo-dum-boom. You know, that kinda stuff. Then maybe one more emotional note to end the summer, where you have a kid down about the summer. Again, we could fold this…somebody said what about an emotional journey? I said well, maybe the paperboy. I don’t know if we’re gonna have one continuous emotional journey. But I think we gotta use the end of summer to signal the sadness of a child at the end of the summer. Then the mother says well, Johnny, how about a little apple for you and Mary-Sue? They say gosh darn it, mom, I didn’t even know you had apples. She says, we don’t.
Let’s climb in our applemobile. Then you do that Disney thing where the kids and the mom look like they’re in the applemobile with you. We’re gonna go pick our own apples. Then this is when it gets good; we go into a sky mode, which you’re gonna see here on the ride here. Now we’re traveling above New York State and looking at the bounty. Then we get another good…now, the bounty of New York State. New York State’s proud to present…and we fly over the different ones. We do zoom-ins, we get the smell-o-vision with the apples, we…they’re gone, then we could even zoom in. You go up and then you go back down. You go over these hills, and New York State’s got great hills and mountains. You start to do all that, and you also can fit in a lot of New York…we can get money from the state.
You say well, there’s New York State’s official bike race or what…great New York State Fair. The kids, they forget about…that the summer’s ended, because now it’s fall and it’s apple-picking season. Now, everybody’s happy. Oh, boy. We see all these families picking apples and…as they pick the apples, saying jeez, Johnny, did you know that the apple has flavonoids which have not yet been scientifically proven to be good for you, but may be? Great; crunch. Maybe a brother and sister are…what’s your favorite apple? Blah, blah, blah. No, McIntosh; the greatest apple that ever was. But then, we’re not done yet, because this is a ride, right? So, then you tour around a general…I say well, if Beak and Skiff will pay for it, somebody else will. That’s what I keep saying at the meetings.
They say Mac, you’re not a…and I say, I’m an independent apple; I’m a independent thinker. Crunch on that. So, anyway, here’s what we do next, and this is the big finale, so I’m gonna spoil it for you, but you…you’ll keep…this will keep everybody coming back, is…you go okay, we’re touring around. Then you go by and you say hey Barney, what are you doing? Well, I’m waxing apples. Even the…every…the adults could have a joke at that. You say well, I’m packing apples to ship all the way across the globe. You see somebody typing on the internet there; shoo-boo-doo-boo-doo-boom. We’re virtually sending apples. You get the industrial go, go music going where you think it’s the end of the ride, where you say whoa, this…is this apple propaganda or just have I propagated joy from this ride?
Then you get maybe me, maybe somebody else; they say well, one last stop. What about that apple cider? I love an apple cider. Then you say okay, and then we do a quick turn. Well, maybe…I guess maybe I could be the driver of the apple cart. Maybe we should call them apple carts instead of applemobiles. Remember Richard Scarry? That worm drove an apple car. So, then we…I say well, one last stop, then. Then we go in and it says warning; apple cider production facility closed for upgrade or something. Then we get the warning lights. I’d scoot right into the apple cider production. They say, what are you doing, Mac? I’d say, I’m gonna show everybody how apple cider gets made. Then we’ll get on the conveyor belts, and then the ride starts rocking.
It starts jostling and gets…speed picks up just like a roller…this could be all virtual, by the way, checkbook holders that are listening. I mean, it’s only the greatest…we’re only the greatest…second-greatest fruit in the United States, according to oranges that don’t know anything. No offense, oranges. Then we start jostling. Oh boy, and you’re saying oh, what’s that? They say, well…and then you really get to have…get the apple press. You say oh, look out, Mac; the apple press. Then we do a…maybe some special effects, even fake apple splashes. You could do that with air. We get to do a couple dives ‘cause the apples…after it gets pressed, the water’s gotta go somewhere. Then you go through flash pasteurization, a cold…we got stone-cold pasteurization. Then we…and then we go right into somebody’s mouth, like shoot right down a…like, one last hill. Then the ride lets you off in the gift shop with a apple cider for adults and kids; regular apple cider and hard apple cider.
Available right when you step off the ride. You get a little shot of regular apple cider or you could buy yourself a whole glass. We got apple pie smells and all the different things. Then that’s it; that’s the ride. I’ll tell you what, it’s been a ride taking all of you here with me on a journey around Apple Town. If you don’t mind me saying, it’s been my pleasure. I’ll get off my apple box now, but I appreciate you eating apples. By the way, if you have billions of dollars to invest in a…I mean, why not? You know, let’s start this. The Apple Cart Adventure we’ll call it, with Big Mac. But I hope you have a restful night and get yourself plenty of sleep. Don’t ask why I have a country accent. It’s because I drank some Country Time Lemonade. Don’t ask why an apple would drink Country Time Lemonade, ‘cause that just don’t make any sense. Goodnight.
[END OF RECORDING]
- Tiger Beat
- Johnny Appleseed
- The Beach Boys
Notable Talking Points:
- China produces 48% of the world’s apples
- Out on Route 20
- I’m Waxing Apples