What Are Moon Drop Grapes?
Moon drop grapes are a type of grape grown in the San Joaquin Valley in California. They are a seedless grape breed with an elongated tubular shape and the same hue in color as an eggplant. Moon drop grapes are typically harvested in late September or early October.
Moon Drop® grapes, initially named IFG Six, were created in 2004 by fruit geneticist Dr. David Cain at International Fruit Genetics (IFG) through natural breeding practices.
Developed from a hand-pollinated cross of unnamed grape selection C22-121 and Beita Mouni grapes, the variety was granted US Plant Patent #23531 in April 2013.
IFG Six grapes were renamed Sweet Sapphire grapes and are also sold under the trademarked name Moon Drops® in partnership with The Grapery®. These grapes are not genetically modified and offer a unique, concentrated flavor resembling Welch's grape juice.
Why Are They Called Moon Drop Grapes?
There are many theories as to why moon drop grapes are called such. One theory is that the shape of the grape resembles a drop of water, while others believe that the name is derived from the small, round orbs often found growing on lunar-like rocks.
Regardless of the origin of their name, these grapes make for a delicious and refreshing snack.
What Do Moon Drop Grapes Taste Like?
Moon Drop grapes are known for their unique and delicious flavor profile. They have a sweet taste that is often compared to concentrated Welch's grape juice, but with a slightly candy-like undertone.
This distinctive flavor is a result of the careful breeding and selection process carried out by International Fruit Genetics (IFG).
The grapes have a firm, crisp texture that provides a satisfying crunch when bitten into. This combination of taste and texture sets Moon Drop grapes apart from other grape varieties and contributes to their increasing popularity.
In comparison to other specialty grape varieties developed by IFG, such as the Cotton Candy Grapes, Moon Drops have a more intense and concentrated grape flavor.
What Are Moon Drop Grape Good For?
Moon Drop grapes are concord grapes, usually purple or red, sometimes black grapes. These grapes pair excellently with wine and cheese plates. These grapes make a great snack and can be used in jams, jellies, and juice.
Where Can You Find Moon Drops?
Grapes can be found in many places, but where can you find moon drops?
These are a type of grape that is very rare. You can usually find them at whole foods or at a local grapery, specialty grocery store and farmers' markets. The are sold in bunches still connected to the vine.
They are becoming increasingly popular and may also be available at your local supermarket.
What Are The Health Benefits?
Moon drop grapes are becoming increasingly popular due to their unique flavor and nutritious properties. They are a good source of vitamins A and C, fiber, manganese, potassium, and antioxidants like flavonoids.
Moon drop grapes are also low in calories and sugar, making them a healthy snack.
Moon Drop grapes, like other grape varieties, offer numerous health benefits. While specific studies on Moon Drop grapes may be limited, the health benefits of grapes, in general, are well-documented. Here are some of the health benefits associated with consuming grapes:
- Rich in antioxidants: Grapes are high in antioxidants, which help protect the body from damage caused by free radicals. Some antioxidants found in grapes include resveratrol, quercetin, and anthocyanins. These antioxidants may help reduce inflammation and lower the risk of chronic diseases, such as heart disease and cancer (source: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-grapes).
- Promote heart health: Grapes contain polyphenols, such as resveratrol, which may help improve heart health by reducing blood pressure and lowering the risk of blood clots (source: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/271156).
- Support brain health: The antioxidants in grapes may help protect the brain from damage and reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's (source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5629766/).
- Boost immune system: Grapes are a good source of vitamin C, which plays a vital role in maintaining a healthy immune system (source: https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/168251/nutrients).
- Aid digestion: Grapes contain fiber, which can help support a healthy digestive system and prevent constipation (source: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/271156).
- Improve bone health: Grapes are a source of micronutrients like potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium, which are essential for maintaining strong and healthy bones (source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3798914/).
It's essential to note that consuming grapes in moderation is key to reaping their health benefits, as they are also high in natural sugars. Incorporating Moon Drop grapes into a balanced diet can contribute to overall health and well-being.