Although my paternal grandmother, Helen S Wright, author of the book, Old Time Recipes for Home Made Wine (published in 1909), includes 8 recipes using gooseberries, she does not specify the species of berries. Since she lived in New England when she collected her recipes, she probably meant American gooseberry (Ribes hirtellum) that is native to eastern North America from Alberta to Nova Scotia, south to West Virginia and west to Nebraska. It grows in a variety of sites including wetlands such as swamps and shorelines of streams as well as in rocky openings in forests and along cliffs. Photo Credit Wikipedia

Here is the recipe for Gooseberry Wine, No. 2 in the words of my Grandmother:

Pick and bruise the gooseberries, and to every pound of berries put one quart of cold spring water, and let it stand three days, stirring it twice or thrice a day. Add to every gallon of juice three pounds of loaf sugar. Fill the barrel, and when it is done working, add to every ten quarts of liquor one pint of brandy, and a little isinglass. The gooseberries must be picked when they are just changing color. The liquor ought to stand in the barrel six months. Taste it occasionally, and bottle when the sweetness has gone off.

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By Karen