Blueberry Shrub Mocktail

I've put together the directions for a simple blueberry shrub, which can be combined with soda water for a refreshing summer mocktail or used in the recipe for the "El Chapo in New York," a twist on a traditional margarita that we've been serving at merge for many years.

Photography By Alexandra Privitera | June 01, 2017


1) Crush or muddle the blueberries, then pour over the sugar and stir until the berries are coated and the sugar is evenly dispersed. I cover my fruit and let it sit out in a cool dark room overnight to ferment.

2) 24 hours later, pour the mixture through a sieve, straining the syrup from the fruit solids, and squeezing out as much liquid as possible.

3) You can use the leftover solids in pies or crumbles, or eat them with yogurt and granola.

4) All fruit is different, and you'll get different amounts of syrup from each batch, so I use a general rule of 1 part vinegar to 2 parts syrup.

5) Add your vinegar to the syrup, stir and let the shrub sit for a few hours before pouring into a sterilized Mason jar or bottle.

6) Refrigerate or store in a cellar for an additional week.

7) This concoction should keep nearly indefinitely, if refrigerated, but discard if it changes color.

Yield 1½–2 cups syrup 


  • 2 cups blueberries
  • Zest of 3 oranges
  • 1 cup sugar (I used raw turbinado sugar, but any sweetener will work)
  • ¾ cup light balsamic vinegar
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