Shrub-a-Dub-Dub (Sparkling Fruit Shrub)

updated Apr 30, 2020
summer
Shrub-A-Dub-Dub (Sparkling Fruit Shrub)

Making a shrub allows you to preserve the freshness of seasonal fruits and veggies and a fun way to introduce a crisp bite to your glass without relying on citrus.

Makes17 drinks

Prep10 minutes

Jump to Recipe
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A glass of cocktails on the counter sits next to barware tools.
Credit: Amelia Rampe

The first time someone described a “shrub” or “sipping vinegar” to me, I looked around the room for cameras. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing! And the first time I put a shrub on one of my menus, a guest pointed to a plant on the bar near the citrus and asked if that was the house shrub.

But once you get to know them, shrubs — concentrated syrups made from whole fruit and vinegar — are far from bizarre. In fact, they are truly delicious and easy to make. They’re a fun, inventive way to introduce a crisp bite to your glass without relying on citrus, and making one at home is a great practice of sustainability, allowing you to preserve the freshness of the season with whatever fruits and veggies you have around. Here’s how to do it.

Credit: Amelia Rampe

Making a Shrub at Home

To make a shrub, you simply mix chopped fruit of your choosing with apple cider vinegar, let it sit overnight, blend it all up, add sugar, and blend again. At this point, you can refrigerate the mixture for up to two months. Whenever you’re ready for a drink, simply add sparkling water or seltzer, pouring in as much or as little as you like depending on how strong you want it to be.

Last year, I tasted one of the best peaches I’d ever had in my life and preserved some in a shrub. A few months later, when I poured myself some, I was immediately brought back to biting into that peach. The recipe below calls for peaches, pears, or apple. Use whichever one is at its peak when you make your shrub, then use it to savor that flavor for months to come.

Shrub-A-Dub-Dub (Sparkling Fruit Shrub)

Making a shrub allows you to preserve the freshness of seasonal fruits and veggies and a fun way to introduce a crisp bite to your glass without relying on citrus.

Prep time 10 minutes

Makes 17 drinks

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

For the shrub:

  • 2 cups

    apple cider vinegar

  • 1 cup

    chopped fresh fruit, such as pear, peach, or apple

  • 1 1/2 cups

    granulated sugar

For each cocktail:

  • Ice

  • 1 1/2 ounces

    shrub

  • 4 ounces

    sparkling water or seltzer, preferably chilled

  • Diced fruit, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Make the shrub: Place 2 cups apple cider vinegar and 1 cup chopped fruit in a blender. Cover and let sit at room temperature overnight.

  2. The next day, blend until smooth. Pour through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl and discard the contents of the strainer. Pour the fruit vinegar back into a clean blender, add 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, and blend until the sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate in a mason jar or resealable container up to 2 months.

  3. Make the cocktail: For each cocktail, fill a collins glass with ice. Add 1 1/2 ounces shrub, then top with 4 ounces sparkling water or seltzer. Stir to combine. Garnish with diced fruit.