Serenissima with Strawberry Shrub

Serenissima Bob McCoy is the Beverage Programs Liaison at Eastern Standard, Eastern Standard Kitchen and Drinks, Island Creek Oyster Bar, The Hawthorne, and the Hotel Commonwealth Private Events. His Strawberry Shrub is used in the drink called Serenissima.

1 ounce Beefeater Gin (or other London Dry Gin) 1 ounce Aperol 1 ounce strawberry shrub* 1½ ounces sparkling wine (such as Prosecco or Cava) 1½ ounces soda water 1 lemon twist, for serving

Mount in a highball over ice and roll (rolling refers to pouring the drink from the highball into a second glass, then back into the highball in order to blend the ingredients while maintaining the effervescence of the soda and wine). Garnish with a lemon twist.

*Strawberry Shrub

32 ounces strawberries, stemmed and sliced 28 ounces sugar 32 ounces white balsamic vinegar 4 teaspoons green cardamom 4 teaspoons coriander 4 teaspoons black peppercorns

Place the strawberries into a food-safe container. Add the sugar and stir to incorporate. Cover and store in the fridge or a cool place for 2-3 days, stirring every day, until the sugar is completely dissolved and resembles a syrup. Add the vinegar and stir.

Using a spice grinder, roughly grind the spices, add them to the mixture, and stir again to incorporate. Store in the refrigerator for at least 5-7 days, stirring and tasting daily. Once the flavors have mellowed and combined, finely strain the shrub, bottle, and store in the refrigerator between uses.