Sweet Riverbelle: The New Honeycrisp?

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — In Minnesota, we love our homegrown apples, the Zestar, SweeTango and the beloved Honeycrisp. Now, apple lovers have a new variety from Minnesota to pick from this year.

Chris Aamodt of Aamodt’s Apple Farm in Stillwater says the hype is building over the newest variety to hit the market, the Sweet Riverbelle.

The apples were grown in the southern Minnesota town of La Crescent. Aamodt’s Apple Farm is exclusively debuting the new apple.

“We’re excited about it. You can’t get it anywhere else in Minnesota,” Aamodt said.

Jeannie Skogsberg of St. Paul heard Aamodt’s was selling the Sweet Riverbelle and didn’t waste any time getting a bag full.

“That’s why we came here. I usually get the Honeycrisp, but I’m mixing it with this,” Skogsberg said.

Unlike the other popular varieties, the Sweet Riverbelle wasn’t created by the University of Minnesota, but a private developer in Lacrosse, Wis.

The variety is described as a close cousin to the Honeycrisp. Aamodt says it’s sweet and crisp, with a clean finish.

The new apple isn’t expected to last long this season. There’s a very limited supply.

“This is the first year we’ve had a decent crop of it and the ability to share.”

Aamodt says the trees take a few years to mature so the supply is expected to grow in the years to come. He says it’s a great eating apple and will also work well in salads. Aamodt expects it will be popular.

“Will it take over Honeycrisp? I don’t think so, but it could be a really close second.”

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