Long, long ago, in a former saskatoon u-pick that is now more lawn than bush, a friend and I harvested saskatoons by the 5 gal pail and I made wine. Not your usual cooler-esque cheery saskatoon wine, but a heavy, dense, rich, viscous wine, aged with american white oak. That was way back in 2009. That vintage is now 3 years old and I’m wagering is the type of wine that will rock in the 10+ year range. I hadn’t had the supply to make another vintage since – until now.
Over a year ago, I got in touch with a U-Pick grower who was on the Operation Fruit Rescue Edmonton grower list, but last year the ridiculously deep snow in the winter prior yielded a crop failure thanks to the moose eating the bushes to get through the winter. No 2011 vintage in the stars, trumped by nature. This year though, it was game on. Not only did we get the grower some fruit to sell via her share, and donate a pile to OFRE and a local charity, I came home with enough to make a 2012 vintage of saskatoon wine. No time for it now, so the berries will go into the freezer for the time being until my insane schedule lets off a bit.
Surprisingly, despite the wonderful opportunity to stock up for the winter in a very win-win-win-win situation for all, not as many OFRE volunteers were chomping at the bit to get on board as I thought. We were hardly at capacity for the 2 nights we were out. Still, we managed to glean roughly 350 lbs of fruit. Then we got an email from another Saskatoon U-Pick grower, offering another glean. Saskatoons anyone? I’m done.
I’d love to pick Kevin but have a crazy schedule over the next week including a wedding, a reunion, a funeral and a trip to BC to pick my share in a cherry tree type CSA. If the saskatoons are still going to be available then let me know.
350lbs????? holy crap that is a lot of berries.
next up….. apples.
I’m not seeing anything where I usually pick, trees all blighted. I thought it must be bad everywhere. But no not ‘able’ enough to pick consistently and in volume. Good to know they’re out there though, somewhere.
Drat, I missed this!
I’d love to be in on the next saskatoon pick. I’ll wait for the next OFRE notice and hopefully I can jump at it.
I wonder if these can be used like the Osoberry we have in the PNW. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oemleria Or vice verse I suppose…