One of my favourite bartenders, Bethann McLaren at The Harbord Room in Toronto, turned me on to shrubs awhile back. A shrub is a beverage made from fruit, sugar, and vinegar. You make the shrub first and then use it as a cocktail ingredient. I have been meaning to make my own shrubs since then but, somehow, it has never happened. But today in our local Asian supermarket I discovered packaged fruit vinegar drinks, and I realized they were basically cheater shrubs! I assume they must be widely available in Asian grocery stores. I bought the plum variety and it is pleasantly sour and subtly plummy. I decided to pair it with clementine, since I had some around.
Muddle half a clementine in the bottom of a cocktail shaker. Add ice and
2 oz plum vinegar drink
1 1/2 oz gin
Shake well and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange peel.