Berry Balsamic Shrub

This berry balsamic shrub adds a deliciously complex flavor to cocktails, spritzers and seltzer!
Berry Balsamic Shrub

Shrubs, also known as ‘ drinking vinegars’ may not sound all that exciting, but try them and you’ll be hooked. I discovered them at Husk restaurant in Charleston last year and I’ve been a fan ever since. This shrub is a good one to start with because the berries and balsamic vinegar keep it sweet and tart making it a refreshing mixer. I’m including a few drink recipe ideas after the shrub recipe.

I like to make shrubs over a day or two. You can speed up the process by boiling the shrub but I find that with some fruits heating distorts the flavor so I prefer this method. The other nice thing about letting the sugar and vinegar break down the fruit is that it’s very low-maintenance. I recommend waiting at least 6-8 hours in between steps, I usually just let the mix sit together over night. No need to set a timer with this kind of recipe! Once you start making shrubs you’ll use them over and over, plus they’re a great way to use up bruised or over ripe fruit since everything gets muddled anyway.

  1. Combine coarsely chopped strawberries with blackberries, blueberries, and sugar raspberries – feel free to use any combination of berries you have on hand. Muddle the berries and sugar. Berries will break down fairly easily so no need to muddle too much, the sugar will do a lot of the work for you.
  2. Refrigerate the sugar and berry mixture for 8 hours or overnight.
  3. Once the berries and sugar have formed a syrup, add the apple cider vinegar and balsamic vinegar.  Mash everything together and refrigerate it for another day or so.
  4.  Strain out the fruit and pour the strained liquid into a clean seal-able jar.

Refrigerate and enjoy! Some serving ideas –

White wine + 1-2 Tbsp of shrub + sparkling water = Wine Spritzer

Ice Tea + 1-2 Tbsp of shrub = Sweet & Tart Berry Ice Tea

Sparkling Water + 1-2 Tbsp. Shrub = Berry Flavorful Spritzer

Sparkling Wine/ Proseco + 1-2 Tbsp. Shrub = Champagne Cocktail

2 oz Bourbon + 1-2 Tbsp. Shrub + Plenty of Ice + Splash of water =Bourbon Berry Shrub