The SweeTango Apple Makes Its Northern Michigan Debut

Five Northern Michigan apple growers were among the first in the country to plant and harvest the world’s newest designer apple, the SweeTango. The apple, developed at the University of Minnesota, is a cross between the crispy, juicy Honeycrisp (the must-have apple of the last decade, also developed by the University of Minnesota) and the sweet flavored Zestar apple. The SweeTango is “a fabulous piece of fruit,” says Mark Evans of Evans Brothers Fruit Company in Frankfort, one of the five Northern Michigan members of the Next Big Thing, the SweeTango growers’ cooperative.

Jonesing for a crunchy, succulent, sugary bite? Don’t head to the grocery store to find a SweeTango. This first-year production was small, and most of the apples were sent to an apple distribution company in Minnesota. Do head to a Northern Michigan farm market this fall to find the new apple. Two of the five Up North growers, Bakkers Acres and Interwater Farms, are selling their SweeTangos at area farm markets—Bakkers Acres in Leelanau and Traverse City and Interwater Farms in Petoskey, Charlevoix and Boyne City. You’ll also find SweeTangos at Bakkers Acres farm stand on 2677 Setterbo Road, Suttons Bay, 231-271-3673.

Can’t find a SweeTango? Don’t despair. Click here for more Northern Michigan varieties.

Wondering what to do with all those apples once you get them home?

Article Comments

  • Anonymous

    I love making “fall” oatmeal. Prepare some slow cook oatmeal and pour it over apple slices. Top with flaxseed and cinnamon. Other toppings could include blueberries, honey and milk. The apples soften due to the heat of the oatmeal and you have a healthful treat for a crisp autumn morning!
    Kathleen Lisson

  • Lissa Edwards

    What a luscious, simple recipe. Thank you for sharing!

  • Anonymous

    First I ordered one dozen sweetango apples from the state of Washington for $50 (including shipping). My family thought I was crazy (some people buy clothes, jewelry, pocketbooks, junk…I buy delicious fruit ). Then I found through Twitter I could buy sweetangoapples for the same price from a Bakker’s Acres in MI. I phoned the orchard and the person on the phone was as nice as could be – so very accommodating – she said the apples were picked for me on Saturday and they arrived on Thursday. They were 3 dozen for $50 (including shipping). I love biting into that crisp, juicy, slightly spicy, sweet and tart apple. Yummy.


  • Anonymous

    I bought a half a peck of SweeTangos from the Suttons Bay Farmer’s market on Saturday for $12. Peck was $22. They’ll be there next weekend too.

  • Anonymous

    Great piece about SweeTango! Love how it is described as the next designer apple. Tastes fantastic and should make a big splash once volumes increase!

  • jackp

    This is a crisp apple with a well balanced flavor. Very sweet with a touch of tartness. I will be trying it in many of my apple-based recipes, and it pairs well with NY cheddar. It has all of the best qualities of an apple as far as I’m concerned, and has become my new favorite.

  • Anonymous

    going to have to try them with sharp cheddar. Did have them served with a very chunky blue cheese dressing and that was excellent. I may take that to my next potluck if indeed they don’t turn brown like the Honeycrisps have a tendency to do.

  • Anonymous

    I was really excited to try a SweeTango apple, which I was able to find at my local Wegmans grocery store in the Philly area. I had read about the apple previously, and since I’m wild for Honey Crisps, my hopes were high.

    Unfortunately, SweeTango didn’t hit it out of the park for me. Don’t get me wrong, it made a pleasant 3:00 snack at work, but it didn’t leave me craving another. And maybe it’s because I prefer apples with a deafening crack of skin and fruit when I bite into them, and texture is a huge deal for me. The apple wasn’t mealy, but it wasn’t as satisfying texture-wise for me in comparison to a Granny Smith or Honey Crisp.

    Nevertheless, I’m willing to try again. Maybe the apple wasn’t quite at its peak condition when I got it. Who knows!

  • Anonymous

    I purchased a peck of SweeTango apples at the downtown farmers market in Charlevoix on 9/24/09. I was up north on business for a few days and wanted to pick up a special treat to take back down state to my husband. They were such big beautiful apples and the most delicious I have ever tasted. They were gone much too quickly I sure hope the crop is bigger next year!

  • sunflower

    Where can I find Sweet Tango Apples in Indiana, we bought some in New York State last year on vacation and loved them. Looking forward to some more this season.


    Sue Cooper

  • Anonymous

    The local Wal-Mart in Gurnee, IL has the Sweetango. Less expensive than the Honey Crisp.