Sunday, December 7, 2008

Carpool to Riverhead and taste Queens history

Newtown Pippins were developed on the Queens bank of the Newtown Creek in the 18th century and quickly became known as the “prince of apples.” Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, and Queen Victoria were all ardent fans. Today they are grown by celebrities like Dave Matthews. They consistently win apple taste competitions to this day. The namesake creek has quietly descended into a state that should shame all New Yorkers. The nation’s largest oil spill leaches into it while combined sewer outflows continually assault it. The creek bed is laden with heavy metal wastes.

On Saturday, Dec. 13, we will carpool or take a train out to Riverhead, Long Island, to buy apples, cider, plum jams, plum pies, and other delicacies at Briermere Farm. While we are there, there will be some exploring, of course!

If you’d like to come, please email naturecalendar@gmail.com so that we can determine how best to coordinate travel.


More here: Dec. 13: Newtown Pippin Apple and Beach Plum Outing!

7 comments:

-Joe said...

My 2nd house is in Mattituck
That "Farm" is actually a commercial stand for city suckers.

The best way is to just stay on the North Road (Sound Ave) all the way out to Southhold and hit all the smaller stands. Like the wine joints you cant miss them.

I have 2 of these trees myself--great apples if you can get them before the deer

Queens Crapper said...

What's the best place to pick them yourself? Not that you can do that now.

-Joe said...

A but late in the season but some along the N Road. You can pick trees on home owners farm properts and put money in the box.
Small peaches in September, The best sweet corn in the country at Krupski's and Harbs come the end of June.
I grow Pinot Meunie(Champagne) grapes and figs.
One harvest I do with 2 other guys and myself.
..like Krupski and Harbs I refuse to use illegels.
Not only do they carry desease who the hell needs a lawsuite when one looses an eye or finger after an all night fiesta.

This time of year much of the stuff like corn and apples is braught in.
Countless times I been stuck behind trucks from Pa and the Carolinas bringing stuff in.

The Mattituck Strawberry Fest (Behind my yard)is another joke tourist trap.
$7 pizza w/coke and $7 Pa. Strawberry shortcake.
Crappy Gyros with green hothouse tomatos.

All $$ greedy carnavals, Pumpkin picking with everything shipped in, they buy NOTHING from the locals !

Liman said...

Hey, Joe. Don't ruin Briermere for me. They do bake pies there, don't they?

I've been there a lot. You have to ask what's local. It still has the LOOK of a real farm stand.

And everything's a lot better than what you can buy at C-Town.

Anonymous said...

To my best knowledge, the only Newtown Pippen actually in Newtown is a sapling planted at the Presbyterian Church about 10 years ago.

Anonymous said...

"Hey, Joe. Don't ruin Briermere for me. They do bake pies there, don't they?
I've been there a lot. You have to ask what's local. It still has the LOOK of a real farm stand.
And everything's a lot better than what you can buy at C-Town."

Their pies are actually fresh and local. In season pies like peaches and cream and strawberry and cream are great. Very expensive though. But well worth it. I have never had a pie that good. The "frozen" pies are the cobblers, cherry and apple pies that you can get all year round. But I am pretty sure everything is made there.

I think you can still go apple picking upstate. Not too many places on Long Island to do that. Never really were. Not that I know of anyway.

Erik Baard said...

Thanks for posting the trip! We've also added a visit to the River head Foundation, which rescues seals, other marine mammals, and turtles. See http://www.naturecalendar.com for more.

There's no fee for this outing. Participants are responsible for only their share of travel costs and their own shopping indulgences. We're working out whether to take road or rail.

As for the Newtown Pippins, this spring there will be 10 of them in NYC, paired with Honey Crisps. It looks like one pair is going to Maspeth, with two or three other Queens sites in contention this year. We will bring more into NYC in coming years.

Parallel to this restoration (but absolutely not required of recipients of the saplings) is another effort: to have the Newtown Pippin declared the official apple of NYC!

Erik Baard
http://www.naturecalendar.com