Loganberry Drink - Gastro Obscura


Loganberry Drink

This dark, sweet refresher was born at a now-defunct amusement park on the shores of Lake Erie.

Crystal Beach Amusement Park operated on the shores of Lake Erie from 1888 to 1989. Located in Fort Erie, Ontario, the park welcomed both Canadians and Americans, who came from Buffalo, New York, via ferry. After enjoying the twists and drops of the famed Comet roller coaster, visitors could refresh themselves with one of the park’s signature concessions: a cool cup of loganberry drink.

Hot dog stands kept ice-cold gallons of the beverage, a blend of water and loganberry syrup (usually Cronfelt’s or Smeader’s), on hand. With a flavor based on the loganberry fruit, a hybrid of blackberry and raspberry, the drink was sweet, tart, and an intensely dark purple. Unfortunately, Crystal Beach closed due to financial problems in 1989 and its rides were demolished or dismantled and sold to other theme parks. Loganberry drink, however, remained a local favorite, popping up on menus and shelves throughout Southern Ontario and Western New York.

Those who grew up sipping cups of the tart nectar can now get their fix with new brands of syrup or premixed versions, including PJ’s Crystal Beach and Aunt Rosie’s. Though they can be tough to track down outside the region, stores around Fort Erie, Niagara Falls, and Buffalo are the best bets for spotting loganberry in cans, bottles, or fountains.

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Written By
Jake Ryan Jake Ryan