Ever since dining at the wonderful Pok Pok restaurant in Portland, I have had my eye set on trying to recreate their Som Drinking Vinegars. The non-alcoholic cocktail of tart concentrated fruit syrup mixed with soda water in a 1:4 ratio is served at their Whiskey Soda Lounge, the perfect spot to sit and enjoy their famous fish sauce chicken wings. Drinking vinegars, also called fruit shrubs, are popular these days, with apple cider vinegar making an appearance at breakfast mixed with water and honey. The benefits of ACV (apple cider vinegar) have been touted since the 50s as a folk remedy, and it is claimed to effective in lowering blood sugar levels, lowering cholesterol, and curing illness. While I am not a fan of fermented drinks like kombucha, the tart and fizzy taste of apple cider vinegar in this lightly sweet blackberry shrub wins me over- and I hope you enjoy it too.
For those looking for an exciting twist to their home cocktail making or wanting to make your own soda syrup, the tart flavor from the vinegar blends beautifully with honey and fruit to create a unique drink. I have been enjoying a tablespoon in a glass of soda water, and the beautiful color from the blackberry is striking. Not only is this drink recipe healthier than your normal soda or mixer, it also uses honey instead of refined sugars. While this recipe is meant for the stovetop, there are also great recipes for drinking vinegars made in the fridge (I would try this one). You definitely need to dilute this syrup, so plan for soda water, lemonade, or cocktail making with this mixer!
Blackberry Drinking Vinegar Syrup (makes a bit over 1 cup of concentrated syrup)
- 1 cup fresh or frozen blackberries
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- Club soda to serve
On medium-low heat, begin heating the blackberries and honey together. Use a potato masher or the back of a fork to begin breaking down the blackberries. After about 10 minutes of allowing the mixture to cook, you should have about one cup of beautifully fragrant blackberry honey syrup. Allow this to sit until it is cool enough to handle.
Using a strainer, cheesecloth, or even a dishtowel, carefully remove the blackberry solids by pressing the liquid through into another container. I ended up with 3/4 of a cup of liquid once I removed the solids. The leftover seeds and pulp are delicious mixed into yogurt or granola, as they are jam-like.
Finally, pour this blackberry honey syrup into a jar and add 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar. If you are a fan of kombucha and sour flavors, go closer to 1/2 cup, but if you are just looking for a zingy refreshing tang to your syrup, stick with closer to 1/4 cup. To taste test, dip the end of a spoon into the syrup. As a reminder, this is concentrate, so it will taste strong no matter what! I loved both versions and just dilute into a drink depending on whether I want a stronger or weaker taste.
Add 1 to 2 tablespoons into a cup and top with club soda, ice, and blackberry garnish for a refreshing drink. As the concentrated syrup sits in the fridge, the flavors will mellow out a bit. You can store the syrup in the fridge for up to one month. Let’s cheers, and check out the other Recipe Redux drink recipes below!
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