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Jun 27, 2006 07:09 AM

What does bushberry mean to you?

OK, this year I'm hearing the term bushberry for the first time. Searches on the web have all different explanations.

I'm hearing the term from people who shop at upscale places so I'm thinking it is the catch phrase of the moment. Why call it 'mixed berries', blackberries, raspberries when there is the more exotic term of bushberry.

Am I wrong. Is this a common term?

Somehow I am just guessing I'm going to be seeing bushberry on every upscale menu in town this summer. Last year it was huckleberries.

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  1. I think it's a new term for the public, but one used in the agricultural community for awhile. I have been working as a consultant in the farming and food industry for a few years and first heard it there. I only started hearing it late last summer in the food world.

    Bushberries are considered to be Blueberry, Cranberry, Currant, Gooseberry, Huckleberry, Elderberry, Juneberry, Salal, Lingonberry, and more.

    Blackberry, Raspberry, Marionberries, Evergreen blackberries and Boysenberries are considered to be caneberries, but are now sometimes lumped into the bushberry definition.

    And to answer your last question, I am willing to bet that you will see both terms, bushberries and caneberries, on menus and entering chefspeak and foodiespeak. Chefs and foodies always love to use jargon and agricultural food terminology. I know I do. ;-)>

    3 Replies
    1. re: JMF

      Thank you, thank you, thank you for that wonderful reply.

      Normally I would Google on my own the following questions but really, I just haven't caught up reading the boards yet.

      What are Salal?

      I can understand bushberries because, well, from bushes.

      However, what's the reason for the name caneberries?

      Thanks for confirming what immediately hit me with your first sentence. I was thinking that so many upscale restauarants and stores deal directly with small farmers and farmers. So as they are talking to the farmers they hear the term and it starts translating to menus.

      1. re: rworange

        Salal is a shrub with berries that grows in western US and especially the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia. They are pretty interesting, although a little mild. I used to forage for them when I lived in Washington State. You can make a nice jam or jelly from them when mixed with tart tasting fruits.

        Caneberries are the term for raspberries, blackberries, etc. that grow on brambles, also called canes.

    2. As a teenager in WA state (a few decades ago) I was on various berry-picking crews. I had never encountered the term "bushberries" until you used it.

      1. To me, on a restaurant menu, it would imply "eat somewhere else."

        3 Replies
        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          Guess you won't be eating at a lot of your favorites soon. Tell me when the term hits Oliveto.

          1. re: rworange

            Not likely. Oliveto and my other favorite places tend to list the ingredients in detail.

            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              Ah Robert, I'd almost bet you a dinner at the French Laundry that someday you will eat those words.

        2. Just discovered this board and I think I might have been the source for the bushberry reference on the SF Bay Area Board, since people there didn't particularly seem to familiar with the term when I used it. I'm pretty sure that I read the term in a Wednesday Food section, probably the SF Chronicle, maybe last year.

          btw rworange's glass bottle storage method for strawberries worked pretty well for boysenberries too. I slid a basket's worth into a large glass bottle and left in in the frig just before a week-long trip to Denver. When I got back, I had almost fresh boysenberries. They were a lot fresher than the two baskets I carried on the plane with me.

          2 Replies
          1. re: chocolatetartguy

            Good to hear the berries in the glass jar worked. So far with raspberries I've glass-jarred lasted a week ... only because I finished the berries up. I am curious how long raspberries will last and when they will eventually go bad ... and how ... strawberries go bad in a different way ... like they over-ripened.

            Yes, you were the second or third person on the board to mention the word 'bushberry'. The first few times I let it go, then I got curious.

            1. re: rworange

              Not like I'd have an opinion on this topic.

              The term "bushberry" grated on me, because each delicious fruit deserves to be named.

              No that isn't it. It is because I first think bushbaby and those primates can get their own darn fruit.