Return to the Fruit & Orchards Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

Posted by davidrt28 7 (My Page) on
Sat, May 24, 14 at 13:11

Those of you in the PNW may be aware of this native species.

According to Mentalfloss and a few other internet sources, this is the source of the flavor known as "blue raspberry". Produced synthetically nowadays, of course. There used to be a foodie-type blog with a longer story of its purported discovery: something like a flavor chemist who was out in the woods and tasted some, and thought "gee whiz, we better figure out what makes these tick". But I can no longer find that link. Do they really taste like blue raspberry slurpees, popsicles, etc?


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

Yes, I have come across this plant and berry infrequently in the mid-elevations of OR and WA. The berry tastes very similar to a standard garden-variety black-cap black raspberry.

Once incorporated into a slurpee or popsicle, I cannot image a person could tell the difference from R. occidentalis, the commercial blackcap.


 o
RE: can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

OK, I think I see what you're saying here. As an easterner I've probably never had a "commercial black-cap black raspberry", but you mean that commercial fruit also is similar to the artificial "blue raspberry"? Well, great...now curious to try one in the garden. The Himalayan bramble is quite happy to be a weed here so it's hard to imagine a PNW cultivar should have too much trouble with our hot summers.


 o
RE: can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

Oh...wait...now I see the commercial one is actually native to the east but more commonly grown for commerce in Oregon. Figures. I'll have to seek out a pick-your-own somewhere near me to find these elusive black raspberries.


 o
RE: can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

FWIW I probably missed the chance to find these at a farm, but I was up in Lancaster Co. and saw a jar of black raspberry jam at a farmer's market. I figured I'd try it. Indeed one can discern the similarity to the artificial flavor known as blue raspberry. There's definitely a quality not shared with raspberries or blackberries. So that part of the mystery is solved at least. I wonder why I never encountered this flavor before.

Do the various hybrid berries like the Marionberries just taste like combinations of the 3 main types (raspberries, black berries, and black raspberries) or do any have a distinctive, 4th note?


 o
RE: can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Mon, Aug 11, 14 at 0:48

Well the hybrids taste like something in-between, not really unique, just somewhere between a blackberry and raspberry.
From what I got out of what Larry said, is R. leucodermis tastes like any other black raspberry, which does have a different taste from red or yellow. Yellow raspberries also to me taste different. Especially in jam. The red anthocyanins bring a bitter taste to the mix. Thus yellows are sweeter. Although any yellows bought tasted terrible! I would never buy them, the ones from the garden are ton's better.


 o
RE: can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

R. leucodermis is supposed to be not as great tasting as R. occidentalis - the linked study compares growth and fruit characteristics of a few native R. leucodermis populations to commercial black raspberry.

Here is a link that might be useful: R. Leucodermis study


 o
RE: can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

  • Posted by murky z8f pnw Portlan (My Page) on
    Mon, Aug 11, 14 at 15:45

Cool, I have those in my back yard growing wild. I just thought they were strange black raspberries that tasted better while still purple than if allowed to stay on the bramble longer.

They seem to taste a little better than the wild black raspberries here which are more insipid, but not as good as Jewel or other cultivated black raspberries.


 o
RE: can anyone speak to the flavor of Rubus leucodermis?

  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Mon, Aug 11, 14 at 21:53

Our wilds here are small, but the flavor is excellent for jams. It has beat all my domestics in taste tests, hands down, leagues ahead. I would try jam with the wilds.


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Fruit & Orchards Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here