In the UK at least most people will make coleslaw out of what are sold as "white cabbage" (example here), such that these are frequently referred to as "coleslaw cabbages". Why is this particular type of cabbage usually chosen?
I know little about growing cabbages, but I eat quite a few and this is based purely on my own observations. There are many different types, and quite a lot of variation within each type. However there is one "axis of variation" that I attribute to being at least related to the age of the plant at harvest. In the shop this axis can be identified by the density and compressibility of the cabbage, which relates to how much air there is between the layers of leaves. The ones with more air between the leaves, and therefore have lower density and more compressibility, will tend to be less tough/fibrous and also less bitter. In almost all situations I would prefer the younger cabbage, but to my palate these properties are particularly important when the cabbage is served uncooked, such as in coleslaw. In the UK the cabbages that are most likely to be "younger" are sold as pointed or sweetheart cabbage (example here), and the cabbages that are most likely to be "older" are white and red cabbage. I have tried a basic coleslaw with pointed cabbage and it seemed to work for my palate. I do not understand why anyone, let alone everyone, would choose the "old" white cabbage for coleslaw in particular when there is younger, sweeter, less tough cabbage available for the same if not less money. Can anyone explain?