Rubus nidigrolaria (Jostaberry) is a cross between the Black Currant and Gooseberry, but is more vigorous than either parent. It looks just like a gooseberry until it turns nearly black and ripens. The flavor is more like a Black Currant, although slightly milder, but berry size is larger. Jostaberries contain more vitamin C than gooseberries and are excellent for eating fresh or as jam, juice, wine, and in cordials.
The jostaberry is a thornless, gooseberry-like plant that grows over 5' by the second year. It bears sooner than either parent, is self-fertile, and yields up to 11 pounds per plant. It was developed in Europe and is cold-hardy into Canada. It is completely resistent to powdery mildew, fungal dieback, currant bud mite, and white pine blister. Varieties include Jostagrande, jostina, Bauer Black jostaberry, red jostaberry, and Swiss red jostaberry.
May use fresh or frozen jostaberries. For fresh, strip jostaberries of stems and leafy matter. Discard any that are not completely ripe. Wash thoroughly and crush well in primary fermentation vessel. For frozen, defrost thoroughly and crush well in primary fermentation vessel. Boil water and add sugar, stirring to dissolve while returning to boil. Pour over jostaberries and when lukewarm (70-75 degrees F.) add tannin, yeast and nutrient. Cover well and set in warm place for 5-7 days, stirring daily. Strain in nylon straining bag and press pulp well to extract liquid. Discard pulp. Pour juice into secondary fermentation vessel, fit airlock, and let stand two months. Rack, top up and refit airlock, then repeat in two months. After additional two months, rack into bottles and store in dark place to preserve color. May taste after one year, but improves remarkably with age (3-4 years). [Author's own recipe]
My thanks to John & Doretta Moore for the request.