Despite its nutritional virtues, pretty color and pleasant scent, grapefruit has a reputation for tasting sour and bitter. Horticulturalists have worked hard to develop varieties that are sweet and tangy, rather than unpleasantly acidic. Their labors have happily borne fruit — red, white and pink fruit, to be exact.
Blush Is Best
It’s not entirely true that the redder the grapefruit, the sweeter the taste. Some deep red grapefruits can still be unpleasantly bitter, while blush-pink grapefruits feature a pleasingly sweet-tart taste. Nonetheless, both pink and red grapefruits are sweeter than white grapefruit varieties, as a general rule. Choose a grapefruit with at least a little red pigment to it for the sweetest fruit. You’ll be boosting the health benefits, too — red and pink grapefruit get their color in part from lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that may help fight cancer.
The Oro Blanco
Citrus fruits readily hybridize with each other, so new varieties crop up all the time. The Oro Blanco, whose name means “white gold,” is a cross between a white grapefruit and another grapefruit relation called the pomelo. The resulting fruit is a bit larger than your standard grapefruit, with a deep golden peel, pale yellow flesh and a thick rind that is easy to peel. Oro Blancos are sweet and lack the balancing acidity of more common grapefruit varieties. Oro Blancos were patented by the University of California at Riverside and are grown exclusively in California. They may be harder to find than standard grapefruits, but when it’s pure sweetness that you’re after, they’re worth the search.
References and ResourcesBon Appetit: Guide to the Different Types of Grapefruit
Fruits and Veggies More Matters: Grapefruit
American Cancer Society: Lycopene
Specialty Produce: Oro Blanco Grapefruit