Tangerine Mint Shrub

For those of you in the beginning stages of cocktail making may be wondering, “what is a shrub?”  Other than it being another word for a bush, a “shrub” is basically a fruit vinegar.  It adds the perfect balance between the sweet & savory to a cocktail.

 Gin pairs very well with most shrubs and this Tangerine Shrub is no exception!

Tangerine Shrub

Prior to the invention of refrigeration, a shrub syrup was a means of preserving fruit long past its picking. Shrubs were popular in Colonial America, mixed with cool water to provide a pick-me-up on hot summer days.

TangerineShrub4 The process of making a shrub includes making an oleo-saccharum which translates as “oily sugar”.
By combining the oils from the tangerine peels with the sugar will add a measure of complexity and brightness to the shrub.
 Tangerine Shrub Cocktail Recipe:  

Makes 1 8oz Cocktail

  • 2oz. Gin (Glorious Gin is what I used)
  • 1oz. Tangerine Shrub*
  • 1oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 4-5 Fresh Mint Leaves
  • 2oz. Sparkling Orange Pellegrino or Club Soda

Oleo-Saccharum – Recipe: Makes 1/2 Cup

  • 2 Tangerines – peel of tangerine w/out the white pith
  • 1/2 Cup Fresh Mint Leaves
  • 1/2 Cup Turbinado or Raw Sugar

Tangerine Shrub – Recipe: Makes Approximately 4 Cups

  •  5-6 Fresh Tangerines Juiced
  • 3/4 Cup Champagne Vinegar or Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 Cup Tangerine Mint Oleo-Saccharum*

Profile:  Classic/Original~Refreshing and Sweet

Glass: Collins

Garnish:  Mint Sprig



Remove the zest of your tangerines with a vegetable peeler. Try to avoid the white pithy part of the peel, it is pretty bitter.  Pull the mint leaves from the stems.

 In a bowl, combine the tangerine zests and mint with the sugar. Using a cocktail muddler press the the zests in with the sugar and mint.  Press a thoroughly but do not annihilate the zests.
Cover the bowl and let it set for at least an hour.
Once the hour has passed remove the tangerine zests and the mint from the sugar. (if your sugar is sticking to the peels you can always pour your liquids into the oily sugar and then remove the peels). Your oleo – saccharaum is ready.
Tangerine Shrub
Once the Oleo-Saccharaum is ready you can can pour the tangerine juice and vinegar into the “oily sugar”. Stir well to dissolve the sugar.
Transfer the shrub mixture into a clean mason jar with a lid. Close it tight and shake it to blend ingredients well.  Store the shrub mixture in the refrigerator. Allow 2 to 3 days for the flavors to infuse before enjoying.


In a glass mixing pint combine the tangerine shrub mix with the lemon juice ,mint and gin. Add ice and shake for a few seconds.

 Add ice to the collins glass. Double strain through a fine mesh strainer the contents of the mixing glass into the collins glass.

Top with sparkling soda.

Garnish with mint sprig and serve.


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