From Scratch: Cranberry Rosemary Shrub

Amid all the merriment and good cheer of the holidays is the Santa-hat-wearing elephant-in-the-room: the stress. We all feel it, and while it can’t be avoided, it can be managed. How, you ask? A good, strong cocktail that can slap the Scrooge out of anyone.

Like any good bar buddy, the Cranberry Rosemary Shrub has a story. This winter cocktail’s main ingredient – the shrub – dates back to 17th century England. Before refrigeration (warm Pinot?!), vinegar was poured over berries and other fruits to preserve them during the off-season. The mixture was left to infuse for several days, then strained. What was left was made into a sweet-and-sour soft drink or, better yet, used as a mixer for alcoholic cocktails (we totally would have been friends with those people).

For this holiday-ready drink, we enlisted the help of Shem Blum, New York Ambassador for Reyka Vodka (follow him on Instagram and Twitter). Whip it up then whip it out when the season starts setting your tree on fire.

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