My friend Sarah gets credit for this ingenious gift idea. A sweet-tart combination of fruit juice, sugar, and vinegar, the shrub is a versatile drink mix that’s easy to make. To serve, fill a glass with ice, add a splash of shrub, and top off with carbonated water or club soda. Add a shot of rum or brandy, if you like. Or mix the shrub with sparkling wine instead. Any way you fix it, it’s awfully refreshing.
Makes about 1 quart.
1 1/2 c. water
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 quart fresh cranberries
1 thumb-sized knob of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
2 c. cider vinegar
Bring water and sugar to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add cranberries and ginger, simmer 15 minutes. Add vinegar, simmer 5 minutes more. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve set over a bowl, pressing on berries to release as much liquid as possible. Transfer to a glass container and refrigerate up to a month. Shake or stir before using.