Start into the days of summer time with a refreshing consume to hydrate, refresh and awesome off.

This is one particular of my favored summer time beverages and it tends to make use of the season’s sweet strawberries. It is identified as a shrub, or a tonic, which is a syrup composed of fruit, sugar and vinegar. Also acknowledged as drinking vinegar, shrubs are an aged-fashioned process of preserving fruit by mixing delicate, ripe deliver with vinegar and sugar, then allowing the combination sit for a several days to mingle and macerate in advance of straining out the solids.

At present, shrubs are experiencing a resurgence, again in vogue as a cleaning refreshment, as properly as a flavorful syrup for cocktails. The combos are many and open to imaginative inspiration, bearing in head a several policies of thumb: Use ripe, untreated, gentle fruit this kind of as berries and stone fruit at the peak of season, and wash carefully. Mix with a fruity vinegar, these types of as apple cider or wine vinegar. Experiment with incorporating contemporary herbs, this sort of as thyme, basil, mint and rosemary, which increase herbaceous and floral enhances to the fruit. Provide with glowing water as a refreshing soda, or add a splash to cocktails for a awesome kick.

Strawberry Balsamic Shrub

Yield: Tends to make 2 cups syrup

1 pound strawberries, hulled and quartered

3/4 cup apple cider vinegar

Blend the strawberries, sugar and peppercorns in a bowl. (If you favor a sweeter syrup, you can improve the volume of sugar to 1 1/2 cups.) Combine to extensively mix. Address and refrigerate for 1 to 2 days, stirring often.

Pour the syrup via a fine meshed sieve into a bowl, urgent down on the fruit to extract all of the juice. Discard the strawberries. Scrape any remaining sugar into the syrup. Whisk the vinegars into the syrup. Pour the syrup into a clear glass jar and refrigerate indefinitely. The sharpness will mellow with time.

To provide, mix 1 section shrub and 2 to 3 parts drinking water or glowing water in a glass with a squeeze of lime.

For a cocktail, substitute prosecco for the sparkling drinking water. Or go large and blend 1 aspect shrub to 1 aspect reposado tequila to 2 sections glowing water and a great squeeze of lime.