The sour cherry season on the East Coast is fleeting; maybe 2 weeks tops. When we arrive at the farm the low-hanging fruit has been spoken for and picked clean. However, the tops of the trees are laden with fruit.
Ladders are scattered around the grove. Pick one and drag it to a tree. As you climb it gets cooler, thanks to the abundant shade the tree gives off.
Now you have a bird’s eye view. Lots of ruby red cherries for the taking. The first cherry picked goes directly into your mouth. Sun-warmed juices explode and drip down your throat. The pit gets isolated and spit to the ground. Go in for more snacking. The cherries taste incredible. Sweet, warm and sour juices start to flow through your system.
Balance is key. Reach for a cherry. Stay steady on the ladder. Place the fruit in the basket. Repeat until you have chosen the ripest berries. And don’t forget to sample as you go. How else are you going to know what to pick?