William Henry Harrison used apple spirits as campaign symbols
The eventual ninth President of the United States was accused during the 1840 Presidential campaign of being a hick from the sticks who would rather “sit in his log cabin, drinking hard cider” than run the country. Harrison turned those smears in his favor, using a log cabin and hard cider vessels as campaign tokens, and even commissioning bottles of hard cider in the shape of log cabins.
One bad apple really can spoil the whole bunch
Based on our anecdotal research, more people seem to think of this saying in metaphorical terms rather than in literal ones. Meaning, they think of one crummy person ruining a night out for everyone else (looking at you, Chad). But this proverb has literal roots, which have to do with an actual apple spoiling a bunch of other actual apples. The culprit here is ethylene, a gaseous plant hormone that stimulates ripening. Placed together in a barrel or other container, apples will emit ethylene and help each other ripen. If one of the apples is gashed, mashed, or overripe, it will emit an excess of ethylene and can cause all of the other apples in the bunch to go bad. This isn’t a saying, but maybe it should be: You can’t make quality apple spirits from bad apples.
Cosmic Crisp is “the most important apple of the future”
Like racehorses, apples can be bred for different qualities. During the past two decades, researchers at the University of Washington have been developing a strain that combines the flavor profiles of some of the tastiest apples there are along with the enhanced durability and shelf life of other varieties. The result, dubbed Cosmic Crisp, was described by the New York Times as “dramatically dark, richly flavored and explosively crisp and juicy.” These qualities, combined with its improved shelf life, moved the paper to call it “the most promising and important apple of the future.” Watch out, Red Delicious. (Gala and Fuji, you’re on notice, too.) Cosmic Crisp will hit supermarket shelves in 2019, hopefully to be infused into a spirit or two soon thereafter.