Battle of the Peaches: Cal Reds vs. the O'Henry's
Anyone that knows me well, knows that every summer, I turn into an obsessive-compulsive peach fantatic. During the height of the season, every day that I miss a peach, I experience a little bit of soul death. I know it sounds dramatic, but OCPD is like that.
I also am very discerning about my peaches. I won't stand for mealy or mild mannered. I like a peach that's bracingly sweet but balanced with good acidity. Normally, I have them express delivered—meaning driven in by my very kind in-laws who live in Modesto where there's a place called Smith Ranch (701 Claratina Avenue, off McHenry Ave.) that's peach legendary. I just finished up a flat of Fay Elberta's that were true ambrosia.
This week I didn't get my Smith Ranch fix and didn't make it to the market, so I've been out of peaches and forced to glumly eat my way through a honeydew. Yesterday, it was with great excitement that I got a package delivered to me by Frog Hollow. A box of Cal Red peaches, packed with care. (A bruised peach is a sad thing, especially when it costs you an arm and a leg.) The O'Henry's—another epic peach variety—are in season right now too and Frog Hollow is offering what they call the "Battle of the Peaches" box (at $38 for a dozen, they should be liquid gold) which includes both the Cal Reds and the O'Henry's.
Once you try them you can vote for your pick on the Frog Hollow website. I haven't tried their O'Henry's yet, but I can't imagine a peach being much better than the Cal Red I just polished off. It was definitely worth $3, if you consider a run-of-the-mill latte costs that much. But more importantly, I feel whole again.