I Heart C.J. Olson Cherries

Fruit Stand

When I first had the idea to blog about El Camino Real, the first topic which came to mind was C.J. Olson Cherries in Sunnyvale. Over the years this historic fruit stand has been one of our most frequent single destinations on the Royal Road, especially in the summer cherry season. We’ve become very friendly with the good folks there, including fourth-generation owner Deborah Olson.

Olson’s describes itself as located in the heart of the Silicon Valley. They’ve been there since 1899, well before silicon. (You know what I mean.) Before it became the high-technology capital, Santa Clara Valley was primarily agricultural, aptly known as “The Valley of Heart’s Delight.” That makes Olson’s the Valley’s Heart of Hearts. See, we engineers call that refactoring.

ms. independentI’m not done. Regard the cherry. With its indented top and peaked bottom it’s a ruby red valentine to the eyes and taste buds. Turn it around to where the lobes meet and it becomes subtly anatomical, though thankfully not grossly so. When you pop a cherry in your mouth and crunch down on its juicy goodness you don’t want to be thinking about atria and ventricles, but the symbolism is powerful. Olson’s extols the health benefits of cherries for preventing heart disease—something to do with flavonoids. Sounds like the purest sort of homeopathic remedy to me.

Local cherries peak in the summertime but the days are getting shorter and my beloved summer fruits are gone for now. Happily Olson’s is always fully stocked with the best seasonal produce. Still when summer ends I turn my attention to their delectable selection of prepared and packaged items: dried fruits, nuts, and baked goods. Oh…and chocolate. Lots of chocolate. Truthfully when I refer to dried fruits, nuts, and baked goods, I really mean dried fruits, nuts, and baked goods all dipped in chocolate.

Next weekend Olson’s is hosting their annual Harvest Faire. They’ll be celebrating your favorite fall crops like apples, pumpkins, and candy corn (OK, I added that last one). Their signature locally-grown dried Blenheim Apricots are headlining these days. I also expect there will be plenty of sweet and savory goodies to sample. Stop by, say hi, and load up. It will do your heart good.

C.J. Olson Cherries Harvest Faire

Saturday, October 10th, 12:00 – 4:00 pm
348 W. El Camino Real
Sunnyvale, CA 94087

Exotic pumpkins and more will be the highlight of our annual harvest faire along with the new crop of fall apples. So mark your calendar, get out your carving tools, and join us for special tastings and demonstrations at our Sunnyvale pumpkin patch.

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