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You know those sweltering, sun beating down, summer days……. where the wind just blows more hot air, and your clothes sticks to every inch that’s covered? And you’re so thirsty you just need something, anything to drink, stat. And what winds up in your hand is a glass of wine, cocktail, or beer, and it’s gone in minutes. Like someone literally put a hole in the bottom of it because the icy, cold profile was just what your body was looking for.
Or so you thought. And you quickly realize you shouldn’t have lifted your glass so fast.
I’ve been avoiding that situation this summer with my love for refreshing drinks made with shrubs, ignited by Sherrie‘s magic at the final dinner of our Boss Babe Fest. As the sun set, we stirred up a slew mocktails, using shrubs & syrups had made.
As we taste tested each other’s concoctions, there was one consensus: these shrubs fruity, refreshing, barely sweet, and tangy drinks were a remedy for the heat.
Maybe you’ve heard of shrubs or switchels: vinegar-based fruit drinks that were popular years ago, during the long days of harvesting, to refuel. Today they’re gaining popularity as fermenting and preserving have gone through a rebirth.
What makes them hydrating is the vinegar and sweetener, maple syrup in this case – sending electrolytes through the veins like real food “sports drinks”. They aren’t difficult to make, just letting the blended fruit soak with the vinegar and maple to coax out all the flavor. After at least four hours, up to a few days, you’ll strain it, and the juice is your shrub.
With a half a watermelon sitting in my refrigerator taking up valuable real estate, I decided to go the shrub route, and create a play on a favorite cocktail of mine, The Greyhound. Typically made with grapefruit juice, I love it’s tart tang, with a hint of sweet, and a salty rim that pairs so, so well. It’s key to waking up flavors, creating balance, and giving it the edge that makes you take one more drink.
The apple cider tang of a shrub mimics the puckery grapefruit, along with fresh lime juice & lime La Croix for brightness. The watermelon brings the summer, like citrus brings the winter.
As the seasons change you can switch up the variety of shrub you make, according to the freshest fruit you can get your hands on. Last year I made this Apple Shrub, that is shoe-in for a spiced hot toddy. But right now….. #DRINKTHESUMMER!
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Wow! This is a perfect sip for summertip. I can just imagine myself hanging out in the beach, with some good book to read, while resting in a hammock. The last time I did the laid back summerish feel is when I was traveling in the islands of Thailand.
But anyway, I’ll have this elixir served to my friends for some pool party this Sunday. Thanks for sharing this Amanda! You’re the best!
Love the smell wow amazing cooking well done. Made it for a get together and everyone loved it. Would not change a thing. Thank you for posting.
Beautiful shots and it sounds really delicious, Amanda! I might give it a go soon. x
No secret that I love shrubs and YOU! Thanks for hanging with us for #DRINKTHESUMMER 2016 bf, xx!!
I never tried to eat watermelon like that. Can’t wait to try it out! These look absolutely incredible!
This sounds so absolutely up my alley. Gorgeous!!
SO gorgeous Amanda! I wish I had one of these right now.
Come back to Minnesota so we can make more La Croix mocktails, please?!
AHH this drink is so ME! I’ve been studying all the LA Croix drinks from you Boss Babes, and I can’t wait to start experimenting myself! It’s time! Shrubs are seriously some of my favorite cocktails, and it pains me to admit that I don’t make enough of them, both personally, and for my site. Thanks for inspiring me, Amanda :)
p.s. that seriously looks like the best watermelon I’ve ever seen. I’m droooling over that shot with the spoon.
ELIXIRS!!! A} I love the name of this drink. B} So in love with the colors here – watermelon is so photogenic!! C} Can we please go back to that DIY shrubby, syrupy, fruity cocktail bar last month? So. Much. Fun. Lovely recipe, Amanda!
This sounds so spot-on for the dog days of August! I’ve been eager to try a shrub and this salty watermelon is the best-looking one I’ve stumbled across.
give it a go! i think you’d love the barely sweet tang. and can’t beat a refresher. :) xo
I think you’ve just proved that watermelon juice is the prettiest juice there ever was. Love your shots my friend! And I have to make this before watermelon season leaves us. I stinking LOVE La Croix too – can’t wait to make this.
Oh my goodness Amanda, this is so perfect! I totally agree that watermelon brings the summer like citrus brings the winter.
Loving this refreshing and unique beverage! I haven’t consumed nearly enough watermelon this summer, and now I’m wanting to take it all in one fell swoop – bevvie-style. Bravo, sister!