My apples are ripe! My apples are ripe! At least as far as I can tell, they are.
Besides hardness, how does one determine the ripeness of an apple? I figure that since they are essentially leaping off of one of my trees, that at least that tree must be ready to go. And so I picked a few today, 5 pounds worth, which didn't even make a dent in that side of that tree. I'm excited for this harvest. This quantity of apples is a wonderful gift for many reasons. They will become applesauce, fruit leather, snacks for the bunnies, and more. But I have to admit that the one apple incarnation that stands head and shoulders above the rest is Bill's hard cider. Some have described Bill's cider as strong. Some have gone so far as to call it hallucinogenic. It packs a punch.
So as soon as we acquire either a steam juicer or a fruit press, we'll have ourselves a little harvest-fest and crank through some apples. And a few months after that - hopefully by Christmas - we'll be knocking back some Boggy Hollow cider. :)