I have happy childhood memories of picking rosehips, the shrivelled little berries that grow on rose bushes in the fall, after the flowers have wilted and died. They can be used to make jellies, syrup and, apparently, a drink that is available at Ikea’s food store.
If you’d like to get better acquainted with this unique, mostly ignored taste of nature, Wild Rose Country is a great place to be. There are tons of rosehips in Edmonton’s river valley, along well-worn paths that are easy to walk. Keep an eye out for rosehips when strolling the trails in Hawrelak Park.
Note that rosehips have a very unique taste, and they’re not at all like rosewater. Don’t confuse the two.
The Pitch: There’s no pitch, unless you count the “rosehip drink” label. Along with a photo and nutritional panel, the bottle is labelled with storage instructions and an ingredients list: water, rosehip puree (14.5%), sugar, pectin.
The Look: A basic little glass bottle that contains a murky red-orange-pink liquid. By apple juice comparison, it’s like that cloudy brown stuff you find at natural food shops, not the polished, crystal-clear golden juice they serve on airplanes. There’s sediment that settles out, so you have to shake it before drinking. The look will certainly turn some folks off.
The Taste: The aroma is odd, with a whiff of tomato and flour. The taste is lightly sweet, with notes of tomato, earth and jam. It has a thick, rich mouthfeel. I don’t like the taste at all. It reminds me of the tomato sauce from canned pasta.
RATINGS AND DETAILS
Cost: $1.49 for a 250 mL bottle at Ikea.
Value for cash money: OK.
Nutrition?: Per 250 mL bottle: 90 calories, 21 grams of sugars, 1 gram of fibre.
The verdict: Yuck. My happy memories of picking rosehips doesn’t make this drink any better. If you like tomato juice, by all means try it. I couldn’t finish more than a quarter of the tiny bottle.