18th Century Orange Shrub, A Recipe.

Just a quick recipe for the orange shrub I serve at the C. Black Coffeehouse, most suitable for birthday celebrations and other occasions of pleasure. This could be considered a punch, but has the strength of a liquor. Don't let the mild but sweet flavor trick you. I have seen many a good drinker go down after one too many glasses of this drink. I serve it in the small cordial glasses for a reason.

White wine of a sweet variety
Brandy of moderate quality
The juice of oranges, lemons & other citrus fruits
Peel of the same fruit
Fine sugar
Nutmeg, grated fine

Combine the citrus juice, nutmeg & brandy in a dark colored bottle, keeping it well closed for no less than 3 days. Unlike many common shrub recipes, this variation needs no long infusion period. In fact, the shorter wait makes it particularly suitable to last minute celebrations when no other punch can be properly made. On the day you wish to consume the shrub, combine the wine with the brandy infusion in a large bottle or bowl, keeping in mind the proper proportion of 3 parts wine to 4 parts brandy. Add sugar to taste. Strain through flannel if needed to remove sediment. Serve in small cordial or dedicated shrub glasses. Be prepared to readily refill the glasses as they are quickly emptied of this delicious liquor.

Works Cited

E. Smith, The Compleat Housewife or, Accomplished Gentlewoman's Companion (London, 1739)

John Daview, The Innkeeper and Butler's Guide, or, a Directory in the Making and Managing of British Wines (Leeds, 1810)