Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

A Simply Sweet Cherry Fest

I’ve got some juicy, plump, sweet news to share: it’s time for cherries, especially at Whole Foods Market®! Cherry Fest is our annual celebration of fresh cherries, one of the most anticipated fruits we sell. Whether creating something savory or sweet, or simply diving into a heaping bowl of chilled cherries, now is the time to celebrate this peak-season fruit and our stores are the place to find them. We source the best cherries – and plenty of them – so our stores have enough cherries for all of your cherry needs.

Now that you know where to find them, let’s talk about how to select the tastiest cherries. Here are a five steps to help you…well, you know, cherry-pick the best of the basket.

How to Pick a Sweet Cherry

Check the stems. Fresh cherries have green stems

Give them a feel. Cherries should be firm, no soft spots or bruising

Look for the good color. Depending on variety, ideally they should be deep, bright red to mahogany

Give them the once over. Fruit should be free of insect damage and pitting (little indentations caused by dehydration)

Give them a taste. Be sure the amount of sugar in the fruit is high

Oh, and size matters for cherries. Keep in mind the larger the cherry, the more fruit (less pit) you get. We want you to celebrate Cherry Fest in a big way too, so we’re giving away a case of cherries to five randomly selected winners! Yes, a whole case of cherries! (“How much is a case?” you ask. It’s a lot – about 10 pounds of cherries – enough to bake ‘em, preserve ‘em, dry ‘em, freeze ‘em and still have some for snacking on.) All we want to know is what you would do with a whole case of cherries. UPDATE: Thank you to everyone that entered. Congratulations to our winners, Patti, Becky and Vanessa.

Tell us in the comments below by July 11 and you could win! 

The fine print: These are red Washington cherries and will be shipped directly to you from our farmer partners. Depending on availability and quality, they may be organic or conventional. No purchase necessary. Promotion ends July 11, 2012, 11:59 PM CDT. Must be a legal resident of the US or Canada (except in Quebec, where it is void) age 18 or older to participate. Taxes on prize, if applicable, are the responsibility of the winner. Employees of Whole Foods Market, Inc., are not eligible.

Void where prohibited.

Leave a reply

To provide feedback or ask a question about our company, a store or a product, please visit our Customer Service page.

For more information about posting comments to our blog, please see our Comment Posting Guidelines.

10216 comments

Comments

Cherrylover says …

I LOVE cherries. If I won a case of cherries, I would eat them and eat them and eat them. I would try to save enough for a cherry pie, and freeze some to make cherry clafoutis in the middle of winter so I could have a taste of summer when it is cold and raw out.

Emily says …

I would dip them in chocolate or just eat them fresh!

Karen H. says …

I would make cherry pies to share with my friends who helped take care of me and my family while I was in the hospital with a MRSA-infected abscess on my leg. I would be very careful to wash my hands before cooking too (I always have, but now I'm even more paranoid!).

Jessica Cervinkova says …

With my husband and three young boys, 10 lbs. of cherries would be gone in one or two days. No freezing necessary!

christina says …

I would just eat them in their natural state because they are so delicious as is. I would also share some with friends.

Megan says …

@Enid The price per pound of cherries varies on availability, region, current store sales and organic versus conventional.

Janet Kuhn says …

Hmmmmm....the possibilities are endless! I might make some cherry jelly (my mouth is watering thinking about it). I think, though, that I would likely share the cherries with friends and family! Nothing better than fresh cherries!

Kami says …

First, I would use about 3 pounds of fruit to make cherry preserves for gifts. Then i would make sorbet (my favorite!). I'd also freeze a few pounds of the cherries. Eventually, I would place small batches of the frozen fruit in the food processor with sugar and either plain yogurt or milk and cream for an instant batch of the best ice cream or froyo you've ever tasted. After reserving at least a pound for eating fresh, The rest of the fruit would be cooked with a bit of sugar to make a syrup that will flavor lemonade, iced tea, cocktails, soda, sparkling water, etc. The sweetened cooked fruit pulp left over from the syrup makes a great "fruit on the bottom" base for plain unsweetened yogurt and it can also be used for topping cheesecake, black forest cupcakes or ice cream.

Meg says …

I would love a case of cherries to share with my family. My 18 month old daughter loves fresh fruit and loves cherries especially. It would be fun to make her new recipes and watch her try new things!

Rebecca Cheung-Tran says …

I will definitely share with my co-workers on our floor, to expose to them the fine cherries from Washington State. I can see they may become hooked on it and start looking for these when shopping for groceries.

Rachel M. says …

I would share them with friends and family and make new creative dishes with them.

Lynn says …

I would share them with my family and friends :)

Meghan R says …

A whole case of cherries , I would make any pie with it , and quick breads , and freeze them.

J Fred Hubbs says …

Eat em, freeze em, can em, share em.

Willard Dixon says …

Eat and Share with Family and Neighbors

Jason says …

I would make a lot of cherry jam and a cherry crumb pie or two.

Cookie says …

I would eat some and can many of them as brandied cherries, which my friends love to get as gifts. The rest I would sharee with the local food kitchen.

LSM says …

Eat, Eat, Eat straight up

Susan Berndt-Knighton says …

Our family loves cherries. If we won 10 Pounds of them, I would definately share them with friends and family. We would eat them fresh, make preserves,dry some with a dehydrator, freeze some, and bake tarts. My Grandma who is 96 loves chocolate covered cherries, so I'd make some to take to her. Thanks for the contest, I think Whole Foods is the best market in the country. I am extremely grateful that your store opened in OKC.

Eniko B. says …

Oh my !Please let me win! If I win...I will share with my loved ones, come together for celebrate and make some cherry strudels and crepes and make a bunch of picture for awsome memories! I love to win! <3

Susan Ricer says …

We would love some cherries! Cherries in our salads, cherries in our yogurt, cherries in a bowl! Delicious ! Help us stay health with a free case of cherries! thanks!!

Robin McKay says …

They're red or blush or black and gorgeous. What would anyone do? Lie in the bathtub and pour them all over yourself till you're completely submerged like 'American Beauty 2-Fruit Fetish' and don't stop till you eat them all. Kick your heels up. Throw a few in the air. Invite a friend. Seriously, what's all this making cherry cough syrup mush? If you love 'em let it show!

TJB says …

I would share some with my CSA core group and friends and get to canning with the rest. Yum, Yum!!! Such a great giveaway. Thanks for doing this.

ml says …

eat them out of hand! Pure unadulterated delicious cherries. Mmmm.

Wendy says …

I would love to have the case of cherries!!! I would probably eat all of them right out of the box with my husband and 2 children. We would probably have a cherry pit spitting contest and have SO MUCH FUN! If I have cherries left I would make a raw food recipe I got from your Rochester store from Lisa who does your food ordering Yum!

JOrge says …

make some mouth watering cherry pie!

Nancy Coupland says …

I'd bake pies with my cherries and take some to the skilled nursing facility where I work to share with our residents and my coworkers.

Veronica says …

Thank God for Whole Foods and their healthy eating initiatives. Life is in a bowl of cherries, so I'd live it up with a case. My Sunday School Children would be first to share in the Fest to encourage fresh fruit snacking for the Summer. Then I'd have a blast with the balance in cool cherry spritzers, shakes and smoothies.

Karen Schweizer says …

I would can them up! Cherry pie filling, cherry jam, cherry syrup, I would like to try canning maraschino cherries too.

Monica says …

I <3 cherries! With a case of cherries, I would wrangle a few friends and my two year old niece and have a picnic in a park. Plainly had are the best way to enjoy cherries, in my humble opinion. I like to savor their true essence directly, no baking, cutting, just appreciating their delightful flavor directly. Thank-you.

Rose Lynne Schwartz says …

A week of wonderful fresh cherries and then pit and freeze many for fall, winter, spring delicious eating. Grandkids (and their parents) LOVE the fresh, sweet taste of summer cherries. Am sure they will "make a dent" in them...if we are lucky to be chosen. We are wishing ourselves GOOD LUCK!

Kate says …

I love cherries! I would eat them several ways: off the stem, in a pie, dehydrated, in fruit salad, and in jam. Lots of options for this gorgeous fruit.

Joanne Barrow says …

I have been receiving extraordinary care from a highly unusual and profoundly skilled psychologist after the devastating loss of my mother. He has lighted my path to recovery and continues to guide me with warmth and understanding. I would love to win these cherries so that I could give them to him to share with his family as a token of my appreciation. Thank you.

Dasha says …

I would make lots of yogurt parfaits, pies, and smoothies!

Cara says …

What an awesome giveaway! I would make gluten free cherry pie and cherry cobbler! YUM!!!!

Megan says …

I would probably eat half of them in a week! And then make a cherry cobbler! I had fresh roadside cherries for the first time in May when my boyfriend and I drove across California during a weekend trip. They were amazing!

Rebecca Stahl says …

I would take them to work and share them. I work in a very stressful, and often depressing, field, and most of my coworkers use sugar to get through the day. I would use the case of cherries as a reminder that healthy food can taste just as good as refined junk and still provide the "sugar boost" we sometimes think we need. It may seem boring, but most people bring donuts to the office. It would be great to bring something healthy and really great tasting.

isaac says …

I would make a cherry pie! Thanks WF.

Meg S says …

I love cherries! I would probably eat about half just by themselves and make cherry pie! And maybe a clafoutis. And more. Yum.

Julia says …

hmm i just got a recipe for ricotta and cherry ice cream--so I'd definitely have to try that out! I also cut cherries in half and squeeze them a bit before dropping them in my seltzer water. IIRC theres a great kale and cherry recipe on the WF website as well. I seriously could (and have) pop cherries in my mouth all day!

Megan says …

I'd make a cherry crostata (I'm pretty sure it's a WF recipe!) and then freeze the rest for my kids to eat throughout the winter. We love frozen cherries.

Andria says …

I'd make a cherry pie with whole-wheat crust!

Kathy G says …

By time DH and I finished gorging ourselves, there wouldn't be many left :-) I'd freeze or dehydrate the rest to make the cherry goodness last as long as possible.

Mark S says …

Cherry pie to start then a whole lot of cherry preserves!

Kristin says …

I would make a couple of cherry pies and freeze a ton for smoothies!

Jesika says …

Not gonna lie... I'd do my best to eat an entire crate of cherries. I'm sure there are considerably more productive things I could be doing with this crate, but honestly? I'd rather eat 'em :)

Sue Thompson says …

I'm on a weight loss journey and am embracing all the fresh fruits and veggies...cherries are a fav for me, so I would eat as many as is healthy, share some with my grown family and grandsons and maybe try my hand at a cobbler!

Brenda says …

I just got a brand new awesome blender so I would make some incredible smoothies!

Sally Van Meter says …

Cherries, Cherry, Cherry, the rubiest jewel of fruit; I grew up in the country with Washington Cherry trees and many a mud pie, cake, tart, cookies and turnovers I baked with my sister Connie in our outdoor bakery atop our water well Dusting with dry soft earth for powdered sugar, whole cherries, half cherries, crushed cherries, red cherries dripping down our chins and staining our fingers And mud fights and cherries! Mud balls and cherries, cherries rinsed in the rain, Cherries by the fistfull in the sweet early summer days sitting in our cardboard play houses under a willow tree Cherries now I eat in the middle of the night when the air is soft and scented with the age of my 75 year old cherry trees in my back yard; my cottage, no longer cardboard, sits on an old cherry orchard in northeast Portland. Aaah, give me those cherries to share the wealth of the Pacific Northwest Ruby!

Elizabeth says …

Eat them all!

Pages