Shrub, the sweet-tart syrup favored by colonial Americans, is simply made by macerating fruit in sugar until the fruit exudes its juice, straining, then adding vinegar. Mixed with rum and soda, it makes a bracing drink, ideal for summer afternoons. This recipe was shared with us by Stacey Harwood in her article Late Summer Fruits With Wines and Spirits.
FOR THE SHRUB SYRUP 2 cups blackberries 1 cup sugar 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1. Make the shrub syrup: In a medium bowl, mash the berries with the sugar and let sit for one and a half hours. Strain through a fine sieve into a clean bowl, pressing on the fruit to extract as much liquid as possible. Stir in vinegar and pour into a bottle or jar and refrigerate. The syrup can be kept in the fridge for up to two months.
2. Combine rum and syrup in an ice-filled Collins glass. Top with club soda and stir gently to combine.