July 27, 2011

I thought I knew about all kinds of berries but when I stopped by a local fruit stand in Massachusetts, I was surprised. On the counter were baskets of wineberries.

With all the fruit produced in Calif0rnia, you’d think we would find them here.  However they grow on the East Coast from Canada to about Virginia, and west to Michigan and Tennessee. While found in the wild, they are not native to this country. Originally from Asia, wineberries were brought here as an ornamental plant and as a cultivator for raspberry plants. Many find the plant to be a real menace as it quickly overtakes native plants.

Wineberries are related to raspberries but are smaller and tarter. When you put one in your mouth it doesn’t dissolve into a juicy perfection like a raspberry and the berries have a tendency to stick together when sitting in the container. Wineberries are mostly made into pies or jam as they need sugar to sweeten them up. While my jam turned out fine, and it’s fun discovering something new, I wouldn’t trade them for a raspberry from Sebastopol Berry Farm or Dirty Girl Produce

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