Farming in 17th century New England was thirsty work. It was hot and sweaty, and everything was done by hand. But there’s one thing farmers did have going for them, and that was a vinegary concoction called a Switchel. Made from apple cider vinegar, ginger, molasses, lemon, and water, the Switchel (aka the Haymaker’s Punch) was the Gatorade of its time. It refreshed tired farmers, replaced electrolytes, and the vinegar killed any nasty bugs in the water. It wasn’t served with booze back then because of the harvest, but it had a strong ginger bite to mimic the burn of alcohol. Today, the Switchel is making an Apple Cider Vinegar Cocktail comeback, and you’re in for a sweet (and sour) treat.
How to Make the Apple Cider Vinegar (Switchel) Cocktail
PREP TIME 5 min
Buy unfiltered apple cider vinegar for the best flavour and health benefits.
Switch out the bourbon with citrus vodka for extra zing.
Replace the simple syrup with maple syrup for added layers of vanilla and caramel flavour.
Fill a double rocks glass with ice
Add the bourbon, vinegar, maple syrup, and ginger beer and stir until chilled
Garnish with a lemon twist and serve
Health benefits of apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has a long history and an even longer list of health benefits. It’s credited with everything from improving digestion, lowering cholesterol and weight loss to reducing blood sugar, boosting immunity, and replacing electrolytes. It’s a vinegary one-stop shop of wonders, and it seems there’s truth to the old adage— an apple a day keeps the doctor away.
This Apple Cider Vinegar Cocktail is positively bursting with opportunities to make it your own. You can switch out the bourbon for vodka, gin, rum, or any spirit that grabs you. You can sweeten it with sugar, honey, or molasses (if you’re feeling old school). You can even infuse simple syrup with fresh ginger. Try club soda instead of ginger beer or garnish it with candied ginger instead of lemon. You’re the 17th farmer of your Switchel story so craft your ultimate thirst quencher.
You also might like: Super Easy Hot Apple Cider Cocktail.
When to serve
The Apple Cider Vinegar Cocktail recipe is built for the summer heat, but the ginger spice will work just as well in the cold. The flavour profile pairs brilliantly with barbecue or anything off the grill. You could even omit the booze and serve it as a mocktail at your next garden party or sports tournament.