What’s one of the best parts about summer in Louisiana? Peach season! Somehow, the state of Georgia gets all the attention when it comes to this delicious fruit, but Louisiana peaches are some of the sweetest, juiciest and best in the USA.
You can find peach orchards sprinkled throughout the state, but North Louisiana is where you want to be for the best of the fuzzy fruit. Just a bit over an hour east of Shreveport, you’ll find Lincoln Parish, where the town of Ruston has become the heart of peach country and has earned the title “Peach Capital of Louisiana”. The growing season goes from May through early September, with June and July being the peak months for many varieties. Drive through Ruston’s rolling farmland on a summer day and you can’t miss the sweet, peachy smell in the air.
If you find yourself near Ruston in the month of June, there are plenty of ways to celebrate the peach and enjoy it’s sweet, ripe flavor:
Louisiana Peach Festival – held each year in Ruston on the fourth weekend in June, this “peach party” highlights just about every way to eat a peach. 2017 marks the festival’s 67th year and it will be held on June 23 and 24. In addition to enjoying some great food, the weekend is filled with live music and fun activities, including a bass tournament, a rodeo and an antique car show. You can also shop over 200 vendors to find a unique item to take home.
Peach Restaurant Week – June 19-25
Participating restaurants strut their peachy stuff by adding specialty dishes, desserts and cocktails made with fresh peaches! Check the link for a list of participating restaurants and their menu items.
Mitcham Farms – established in 1946 as a peach orchard, Mitcham Farms is largely responsible for developing the delicious qualities of the Ruston peach. Visit their store, where you can get a wide variety of gourmet foods, such as jams and jellies, peach BBQ sauce and salad dressings, baked goods, gift products and local arts and crafts. And needless to say, it’s a great spot to get a bushel of peaches to take home. Insider’s Tip: Get a scoop of their incredible homemade peach ice cream and eat it outside, overlooking their acres and acres of peach trees – it’s a beautiful sight!
As you drive home with your bags, buckets and bushels of peaches, rest assured you won’t run out of things to use them for. Here are a few good recipes, worthy of the best fruit on earth — Ruston peaches!
For more information on things to do in and around Ruston, visit Tour Louisiana!