Summer Cocktails

Shrubs are all the current darling of the cocktail world. These drinking vinegars are made by infusing sweetened vinegars with fruits, herbs, spices, and vegetables. Because The Olive Scene's Balsamic Vinegars are naturally sweet, they're basically already shrubs! This makes them perfect for refreshing summer cocktails. You can even leave out the alcohol and just make a bright, low-calorie drink. 

In addition to the balsamic vinegars in the recipes, The Olive Scene also carries a line of cocktail ingredients and accessories. Stop by to pick up your bitters, martini glasses, bourbon cherries, stuffed olives, Bloody Mary mix, martini mix, and more.

Here's a small introduction to the world of vinegars in cocktails...

Basic Formula:

The basic formula for a delicious cocktail changes based on whether you are using a white or a dark balsamic vinegar. 

Dark Balsamic Vinegars:

  1. Pour all ingredients over ice. Taste, and add more water or simple syrup to your preference.
  2. Garnish with fresh fruit, lemon or lime wedge, or mint.

The photo shows Lavender Balsamic Vinegar with vodka.

White Balsamic Vinegars:

  1. Pour all ingredients over ice. Taste, and add more water or simple syrup to your preference.
  2. Garnish with fresh fruit, lemon or lime wedge, or mint.

The photo shows Golden Pineapple Balsamic Vinegar with vodka.

Recipes

Blueberry Basil Gin Smash

Light and refreshing, this Blueberry Basil Gin Smash has the subtle flavor of fresh basil and lots of cold, sparkling bubbles. This drink is meant to be sipped outside on a sunny Saturday afternoon with a good book or served with brunch.

  • 1/2 jigger (1.5 tablespoons) Blueberry Balsamic Vinegar (can also use Strawberry)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 tablespoon simple syrup
  • 5 large leaves of fresh basil 
  • 1 jigger (3 tablespoons) gin
  • about 5 jiggers (about 8 oz) soda water, tonic water, seltzer or club soda
  • ice
  • optional garnish: 1 basil sprig, 1 slice of lemon, and/or a few blueberries
  1. Add the balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, simple syrup, and basil to a highball or tall glass. Use the back of a spoon or a cocktail muddler to muddle the basil.
  2. Fill the glass with ice. Add gin to the glass. Top with about 8 oz of whichever carbonated water you're using.
  3. Taste, and add more water or simple syrup to your preference.
  4. Garnish. Drink through a straw. 

Strawberry Manhattan

A dark, rich drink that's not for the faint of heart, this Strawberry Manhattan is meant to be sipped slowly around a fire pit on a warm summer evening.

  1. Combine the balsamic vinegar, whisky, vermouth, and bitters in a mixing glass with a few ice cubes. Stir gently to combine. 
  2. Strain into a cocktail glass.
  3. Garnish and serve in a martini or cocktail glass.

 

Mango Matador

The Margarita's lighter cousin, this Mango Matador is perfect for days spent poolside or on the beach while wearing a floppy hat and plenty of sunscreen.

  • 1/2 jigger (1.5 tablespoons) Mango White Balsamic Vinegar (can also use Coconut, Golden Pineapple or Peach). 
  • 1 jigger (3 tablespoons) blanco tequila
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice 
  • 1 tablespoon simple syrup
  • ice
  • about 4 jiggers (about 6 oz) soda water, tonic water, seltzer or club soda
  • optional garnish: lime slice or wedge, mango pieces
  1. Combine the balsamic vinegar, tequila, lime juice, and simple syrup in a shaker with a few ice cubes. Shake well.
  2. Strain into a cocktail glass or champagne flute. Top with whichever sparkling water you're using. 
  3. Taste, and add more water or simple syrup to your preference.
  4. Garnish and serve in a champagne flute, margarita glass, or highball.