Summer is here when sweet, sticky peach juice dribbles down your chin.
By Lindsey Jenkins
from grunge to glamour
Over the years, Tom Davenport of Hollins Farm (one of the five orchards on the five-mile stretch of “Peach Way” in Fauquier) noticed a difference in customers, whom he now sees as harvesters.
“I had a friend who passed, a World War II veteran, that was shocked when he was told that farms could be travel destinations,” says Davenport. “For his generation, farming was hard—everyone wanted to get out of it. Today, it’s romanticized.”
avoiding the runt
When picking peaches, Jesse Jenkins of Jenkins Orchard in Woodville says to look for a deep orange-red color that feels slightly soft. Luther E. Jenkins started the orchard in 1910 and some of the same trees supply fruits today.
Once at home, room temperature peaches will keep for two or three days and peaches stored in the fridge can last a week.
all in the family
Also a part of the Rosaceae family is the nectarine, the naked cousin of the fuzzy peach. Nectarine’s smooth skin stems from a recessive gene, which also affects its color and size. Though nectarines are usually smaller and less juicy, they contain higher amounts of sugar. Still, they’re the same fruit—they even grow on the same (family) trees.
more than schnapps
The fruit-infused spirit made by Catoctin Creek Distilling Company, Short Hill Mountain Peach Brandy, is named after the Civil War battleground that served as a hot spot for illegal distilleries.
The so-called “peach cobbler in a glass” is a brandy made from Bluemont-grown peaches. “It’s a European fruit brandy,” says Catoctin owner, Scott Harris. “A lot of Americans expect brandy to be sweet, but the drink is more like a cognac.” The oak barrels give the 80-proof brandy a vanilla, nutty flavor. The year’s second batch— 1,600 bottles—will be released Thanksgiving weekend.
Nintendo’s blinged-out babe Princess Peach—created by Japanese video game designer and producer Shigeru Miyamoto—is the the damsel in distress for his major break though game, Super Mario Bros.
The peach is a heavy fixture in Japanese culture. Momotarō, or “peach boy” is a popular folklore hero. According to the tale, the little hero came to earth inside a giant peach and was found when a man and his wife tried to eat the over-sized fruit.
This has been updated from its original version