Rainier cherries are special. People flock to local stores and farmer’s markets across the state once these unique, yellow cherries appear…and for good reason. Once you’ve tasted one, you’ll be a fan too! Cherries are a popular summer fruit, but what makes Rainier cherries so expensive?
- Rainier cherries are a cross between two red varieties, Bing and Van yet Rainiers have a yellow center. This means they are non-staining. You won’t end up with red fingers…or red stains on your clothes!
- Rainier cherries are exceptionally sweet. They have a thin yellow skin and a very tender, juicy sweet yellow flesh. Their taste is truly unique.
- Although they are grown in Oregon and California, they originated in Washington state. The best Rainiers are grown in the fertile Yakima Valley. To fans, only Washington grown will do.
- They are very delicate and bruise easily. They are also susceptible to wind, rain and temperature. The amount of available cherries varies widely year to year, but their popularity always grows. Price is based on supply and demand!
- Birds love Rainier cherries and can eat almost a third of the crop before they are harvested. Again, supply and demand.
- They are harvested June through early August. Once they are gone…they are gone.
- They have always been pricier than more common varieties. People are willing to pay a bit more so prices will probably remain high. Really, they are worth it.
When and Where Can You Find Rainier Cherries?
Find Rainier cherries in Washington state from mid-June to early August in farmer’s markets and local grocery stores.
Go to the source. Head to the Yakima Valley, just a short, scenic 2+ hour drive over the Cascade Mountains from Seattle. There are a number of orchards in the area that grow a wide variety of fruits including apples, pears, peaches and plums.
Take advantage of all the valley has to offer,including Rainier cherries. Book direct and stay with one of our Washington INNSiders.
We have experts on the Yakima Valley and much more.