Empire is a cross of McIntosh x Red Delicious developed in Geneva, New York 1966.
The apple is dark red to purple with heavy, waxy, shiny bloom. The flesh is creamy, white and juicy, moderately subacid and sweet, mellow. A high quality dessert apple, but can also be good for cider.
The tree is vigorous, upright, early-bearing, with a strong, wide, crotch angle. Tendency toward spur type habit. Very consistent annual producer. Ready to harvest in September in upstate New York, keeps till January.