Your Best of Summer Local Fruit Guide

Summer officially begins on June 21st but summer fruit season is already here. These oh-so succulent and healthy snacks and “desserts” are ripe and ready for eatin’ too. Whether it’s a fruit bowl dreamed up for your friend’s summer BBQ, a reduced fruit sauce for your weekend ice cream fix, or a green salad topped off with your two favorites, these summer fruit varieties are going to get your mouth watering, guaranteed.

Peaches, cherries, strawberries
Peaches, cherries, strawberries

Because Bristol Farms stops at nothing to get the very best organic and/or non-GMO fruit pick from our local California farmers each and every season. We work tirelessly with these dedicated farmers to make sure our pick is the sweetest and the juiciest. That means you can rest easy knowing that when you grab a peach, nectarine, or carton of cherries from the shelf, they’re going to be juicier and sweeter than any variety you’ll find elsewhere.

Here are the top 5 summer fruits you should be scooping from our stores now and some recipe ideas to go along with them too!

01 Jumbo Cherries

The devilishly dark cherries are in stores and are looking more enticing than ever. These beauties are California grown and while they’re quite tasty on their own (don’t forget to spit out the seed), they’re also amazing baked into tarts, cobblers, and pies. We also love them seeded and sliced and reduced over low to medium heat with a bit of sugar and balsamic and used for a sauce on scallops, grilled chicken, beef, and even a wheel of Brie cheese!

Bowl of sliced cherries.
Bowl of sliced cherries.

02 Blueberries

Does it get any better than some sweet, sweet summer blueberries? We have conventional and organic blueberries right now that come to us from some of our favorite blueberry farmers in central California. Word on the street is our blueberries are extra sweet and lasting for longer than a week refrigerated! As for blueberry recipe ideas, we’re all about a blueberry and feta arugula salad, blueberry hand pies (recipe here), and blueberry and brie grilled cheese (yep – just add some fresh blueberries between 2 layers of brie and grill per usual!)

03 Strawberries

Yep, strawberry season is a long one in sunny SoCal. We’re not upset over it, either. Come grab a a pound of organic strawberries right now (for a mere $3.99!) and enjoy that au natural sugar fix for your sweet tooth. Our California grown strawberries are big as can be, and boast a perfect ripe bite. May we suggest slicing them up and soaking them in a bit of water and sugar, aka macerated strawberries and then using that as a topping to your favorite vanilla bean ice cream? These berries are also a dream muddled with lime and mint in a spin on a mojito! Or – take the time to create the ultimate Strawberry and Rhubarb pie but please save us a slice (recipe here)

04 Peaches

We have our hands on the first batch of peaches this season, straight from Reedley, California! These fuzzy rounds of juicy goodness are extra, extra sweet too because we use a trusty tool called a refractometer, which measures the Brix score of the fruit! Brix is a measurement system that can actually identify the quality and the level of sweetness in fruit! For peaches, we won’t even accept levels below 15, on a scale of 7 to 18 so to say we’re picky with the peach is quite the understatement!

Plate of grilled peaches
Plate of grilled peaches

04 Nectarines

Our local nectarines are just as sweet and just as juicy as our beloved peaches. But did you know that peaches and nectarines are kind of like fraternal twins? It’s true – these fruits are completely interchangeable for recipes. Nectarines are basically just the bald version of peaches. Nectarines tends to be sweeter and are often times, firmer. Generally preferred for snacking, this stone fruit also has twice the amount of Vitamin A and more Vitamin C than peaches. For nectarine and/or peach recipes, we’re pretty partial to a traditional crumb cobbler like this one but we also love them sliced up over a salad with goat cheese, used in a fresh salsa in lieu of the tomatoes, and simply grilled with a balsamic glaze for a sweet and healthy treat!