When I was a kid we lived on 3 acres in rural Iowa. Our ditches were overgrown, and in the ditches close to the garden were some elderberry…vines? Weeds? Bushes? I’m not certain. My mom found out that a local winery would pay 50¢ a pound for elderberries, and so I’d cut them, and she’d drive me to the winery. The money was mine to keep.
Somehow she found out when the elderberries I picked would be wine (or she guessed) and bought a bottle and I got to try some. I don’t remember how it tasted. In fact, the last thing I remember about elderberries is that the county came through and cut and burned our ditches, which made them neater to look at, but destroyed my small enterprise.
I wonder if anyone local to me now (as I am no longer living in rural Iowa) who makes elderberry wine?