Pineapple Balsamic Piña Colada with Coconut Milk Mocktail Recipe
Prep time: Less than 2 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Yields: 2 servings
Why are Balsamics the New Alcohol?
Balsamic vinegar has long been used to add sweetness, depth of flavor, and acidity to cooking and dressings. However, mocktails made from balsamic vinegar are all the rage these days, and honestly, they aren’t a new invention. At first, that sounds like something your hippie cousin does until you dive a little deeper. Drinking vinegar, or shrubs as they are also known, has been popular for several centuries, especially in the UK and China.
However, sweet and straightforward vinegar-based shrubs are being used to create fanciful mocktails of all kinds are making a splash in the US. These fizzy drinks appeal to the sober foodies and all-out gastronomy nerds alike.
Who Puts Shrubs in Their Drinks?
A shrub is a blend of fruit, either dark or white balsamic vinegar and sugar. It can be flavored vinegar ready to go, or the concoction can be reduced on the stove to create a syrup. Balsamics are already incredibly versatile in flavor, and with infused balsamics on the market like both our dark and white balsamic varieties, there is literally something for everyone.
Think of balsamic shrubs as shelf-stable fruit and sweetness infusions that have been aged to perfection to create just the right amount of bite and depth. These can simply be added to some fizzy water to create a perfectly refreshing soda or can be fashioned with fruit into a delicious virgin daiquiri.
The History of Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
Produced from the highest quality grapes that are matured in wood oak barrels and from either Modena or Reggio’s province in Italy. Similar vinegar production is dated as far back as the 11th century.
However, the word balsamic did not come into play until 1747, and in 2009 the European Commission granted Protected Geographical Indication to balsamic produced in the Modena and Reggio Emilia provinces and Protected Designation of Origin as the origin of balsamic from this region as well.
How is White Balsamic Vinegar Different?
White balsamic vinegar is made of Trebbiano wine grapes from the Modena region of Italy. Beyond the color of the grapes and the vinegar itself, white balsamic vinegar is cherished by chefs across the globe.
Dark balsamic and white balsamic are actually made from the same grape. The difference is that white balsamic is pressure-cooked before barreling so that it does not brown like dark balsamic, and it is only aged for a short time.
White balsamic is known for its sweet tartiness, but it is the absence of color that is also appealing to chefs. It works wonders as a clear glaze that doesn’t change the color of your vegetables brown and is the most magnificent hidden gem of flavor inside your favorite coleslaw recipe.
This is why Golden Pineapple White Balsamic is one of our favorites. The bright, citrusy sour of the pineapple paired with the tangy vinegar makes pineapple white balsamic a fruity choice that can be used everywhere from chicken and seafood marinades to salad dressings and even baked goods.
Our expert opinion is that this white balsamic is perfect for mocktails looking for a little tropical flair.
Bottling Tropical Flavor
The best part about using vinegar is that you don’t have to have the actual fruit on hand. Using vinegar to make a simple flavored soda or mocktail only takes a few minutes, and then you are bathing in a refreshing flavor.
We’ve blended our favorite tropical flavors to create that quintessential vacation treat, the virgin Pina Colada Mocktail. This balsamic mocktail recipe uses vinegar to take the place of sickly sweet pineapple juice and the rum in this recipe, making this mocktail a healthier and tastier choice.
Nothing fancy is required for this recipe. If you have a can of coconut milk on hand and this vinegar on the shelf, you can whip up this mocktail for company in less than ten minutes.
All you need is to be sure you stock those tiny umbrellas for the perfect garnish.
How Creating Healthy Mocktails is the Newest Fashion
Studies show that balsamic vinegar is high in antioxidants and is a good source of iron, calcium, potassium, and manganese.
Some of the powerful health benefits of balsamic vinegar are:
Filled with Antioxidants — Antioxidants help fight off and repair cellular damage done by free radicals that can cause dangerous heart disease and fatal cancer.
Low in Calories and Sugar — Balsamic is considered to limit spikes in blood glucose levels. This low glycemic index makes balsamic vinegar a great addition to add flavor or zest to any meal for those with diabetes.
Aids Digestion — Vinegar increases the activity of a stomach enzyme called pepsin that breaks protein down into smaller amino acids, making it easier for the body to absorb. Pepsin also aids in helping to maintain metabolism.
60 ml Golden Pineapple White Balsamic Vinegar
1 Tablespoon of organic cane sugar. We used sugar in the raw.
4 Tablespoons coconut milk
1 cup + extra coconut water
Optional: Macerated chunks of fresh pineapple for adding to the shrub and for garnishing.
Optional: ¼ cup ice cubes or crushed ice
Optional: Maraschino cherry for garnish. We used a beautiful golden Rainer cherry for ours.
In a small saucepan, combine sugar, vinegar, and optional macerated pineapple bits. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Stir for 5 minutes to dissolve sugar completely. Allow to cool.
This drink can be blended or made in a shaker. If blended, reduce the amount of coconut water by half. In a shaker, combine the four tablespoons of coconut milk with one cup of coconut water and a tablespoon of the cooled white balsamic syrup or shrub.
Shake the cocktail well until the shrub has completely dissolved into the shaker, and then add ice if desired and shake again. Pull into a tall glass and garnish with pineapple slices and maraschino cherries, and a festive straw.
Quality and Options Hand in Hand
At Estero Bay, we only offer the highest quality balsamic vinegar for our tea and food recipes. We also offer a large assortment of white balsamic varieties and dark balsamic, infused olive oils, and teas for the cooking connoisseur and the kitchen novice alike.
Take your meals and your cocktails to the next level using our high-quality balsamic, teas, and olive oils and if you are in the South West Florida area, be sure to stop by our store in Estero Bay for some taste testing and a latte from our extensive tea bar.