If it looks like a crabapple is it one??

I moved into an apartment last year with garden access and a tree in the backyard that the landlord says is a crabapple. He wants to replace it with a real apple tree, and I said I would be happy to use the crabapples for jelly, etc. It produced apple-like pink blossoms in spring and now has clusters of small bright red "apples," the size and shape of small plums, that taste rather bitter.
What has me confused is it doesn't look like a normal apple tree--its branches start almost at the base and are quite vertical, it has lots of leaves evenly distributed, and its shape is tall (15-20 feet) and columnar. I'm used to apple trees having a distinct trunk and being short and gnarled and horizontal spreading.
Is this still something I can cook with, or is it just ornamental (or even unsafe?)
Thanks,
Sarah
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What do the leaves look like? Do they have edges that look like saw teeth? If it is a crabapple he could just cut a small piece from the type of apple tree that he wants and graft it on to the existing tree. He could even graft several different types of apples onto the existing tree. The only crabapple tree that I had was from suckers of another type of apple tree that did not survive. I grafted a Fuji apple cutting onto it and it is now a Fuji apple tree.

I have several different types of apple trees and a couple of them have multiple branches that start at the base of the tree.

Click the following link to see 100's of pictures of crabapple trees.
http://images.google.com/images?q=crabapple&hl=en&btnG=Search+Images
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