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Grape expectations for fall snacks |
Food & Drink

Grape expectations for fall snacks

| Tuesday, September 22, 2015 9:00 p.m.
Witch Fingers: A spooky come hither with robust flavor
Cotton Candy Grapes: Pink fluff flavor in a sweet green orb
Moon Drops: Weenie-Shapes

Just the name — table grapes — evokes a group of friends clustered comfortably around a postprandial table nibbling fruit. But for growers, getting these iconic clusters onto your plate is a less relaxed, more Herculean process.

Just ask Grapery’s Jack Pandal and Jim Beagle, professional grape breeders, who employ meticulous farming practices and incomprehensible patience. Some varietals take 12 years to meet expectations. Some never do and are abandoned in trial.

Note: The breeding process is all natural, organic and paced through the seasons—never any Monsanto-style GMOs here!

Beagle says the company’s one priority is producing “simply the best grapes you’ll ever taste.” All are seasonal, of course, so check to track availability. You’ll find: classic red, green and black grapes, boasting juicy flavor, by-intent thinner skins and seedless fruit; the head-turning limited-edition specialty varieties; and, reading between the vines, whispers of yet newer and bolder varieties to come.

Locally, Whole Foods and Giant Eagle Market District are happily promoting Grapery’s products. You can also subscribe, through the website’s Grapery Direct, to receive seasonal four-pound clamshells, freshly picked and shipped overnight to your door.

Ann Haigh is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.

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