It’s just so frustrating when people won’t go out because they aren’t drinking, although, let’s be honest here, the majority of the pub trade does itself little favours by offering a frankly woeful selection of soft drinks.
That’s why I was excited to try a vinegar & tonic as part of #TryJanuary, which I also embraced last month.
Vinegar has already been making its way into the cocktail scene over here, where it replaces acidic ingredients such as lemon juice, but is more recently making a splash as a non-alcoholic treat. This is due in no small part to its perceived health benefits – particularly around digestion and blood sugar levels.
Bars and restaurants in London, such as RawDuck in Hackney, already showcase “vinegar sodas” on the menu but it needn’t be that complicated – simple cider, white or red wine, vinegars will do. Just pour over ice and top-up with sparkling or tonic water.
The more ambitious can create fruit-flavoured drinking vinegars (aka “shrubs”) by combining fruit, vinegar and a little sugar, adding soda to serve.
It’s really not as strange as it sounds and has a long and venerable history, appearing in many regions around the world.
It’s also low-cost, offers high margins and there’s plenty of scope for experimentation.
Which is exactly what I intend to do, at the same time as I embark on #FebruRum this month.