The Elderberry Company expands into Longboard’s — it’s elderberry syrup, not elderberry wine.


All right, so I’ve been looking for an excuse for many a year to use Elton John’s “Elderberry Wine” in a blog post, and here it is, but fair’s fair; it’s 2020, and Bernie Taupin’s lyrics from 1972 aren’t exactly fashionable in the current era of “woke.”

Ever the Americanophile, the youthful lyricist Taupin’s reach at times exceeded his grasp. Besides, churning out two albums a year had to have been a challenge. Somehow John (music) and Taupin (words) managed it for virtually the entirety of the 1970s, which remains an amazing feat.

The overall feel of “Elderberry Wine” seems more redolent of Honky Chateau (the preceding album) than Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player, given the latter’s status as immediate prelude to the ensuing (and enduring) grandiosity of Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.

Elderberry wine as a tipple? It can be done.

Meanwhile, seeing as there has yet to be a single road paved with golden bricks leading to Nawbany (no sly jokes about mayoral campaign finance on this fine spring day), we find The Elderberry Company expanding into the recently vacated Longboard’s space — and bully for them. Assuming their rent is favorable, the key to success appears to be orders shipped worldwide, rather than strict reliance on customers coming inside the bricks and mortar.

It’s too bad the tricked-out downstairs at Longboard’s couldn’t survive as a speakeasy serving nothing except cheeses, selected Belgian ales and Genever. And yet there are other buildings still vacant …

Good luck and best wishes to The Elderberry Company. Might there be locally grown elderberries for the company’s use at some point in the future?

The Elderberry Co. in New Albany to expand into former Longboard’s location, by Brooke McAfee (Hanson’s All-Male Commentariat)

A few years ago, Jenny Watson started her business by making batches of elderberry syrup in her kitchen at home.

Now, the former stay-at-home mom is preparing to triple the space of her small specialty shop in downtown New Albany.

Watson opened The Elderberry Co. at 302 Pearl St. in September 2019, but after outgrowing the current space, she is expanding the business’s production and shipping operations into the next-door Longboard’s Taco & Tiki restaurant space, which closed in January. She will continue to use the current space for a storefront, which sells organic elderberry syrup, elderberry tea and local honey, and the business will take over the new space in April.