Orange, Ginger & Thyme Switchel

I have been a fan of fermented zero alcohol drinks for as long as I can remember. Don’t get me wrong, I used to love a little tipple, but medical complications means that my love for it far outweighs its love for me. But I also suffer from FOMO, why should the party stop there?

Switchels, Kombucha and Shrubs are my quest, developing new flavours to suit each season. I make this in the time when the sunbeams haven’t quite caressed the Elderflower into its full fragrance and the lacy clouds are still a little too tight in bud to welcome a dousing with citrus and sugar to magically transform into the ubiquitous cordial.

Switchels are the original ‘Haymaker’s Punch’, born to refresh the workers in the fields of 1800s America.

Many thanks to Mark Diacono for the quantities here, I have always kind of thrown them all together, and take note, that Is probably the one and only time you will ever witness me saying that….


20g Fresh Ginger, finely chopped

2 Oranges, juiced, 1 Zested

70ml Apple Cider Vinegar, with the mother

3 tbsp Raw Honey

8cm Sprig Orange Thyme (or use regular thyme)

300ml Filtered Water

Sparkling Water to serve


1. Add the ginger, orange juice & zest and vinegar to the base of a 1 litre sterile Kiner Jar. Muddle together then add the honey.

2. Stir well to dissolve then top up with the water. Seal and leave to infuse overnight.

3. The next day, add the thyme and set aside for 4-6 hours to impart its flavour. Pour through a sieve into a bottle and chill in the fridge.

4. When ready, add some to the base of a glass and top up 1:3 with sparkling water.

5. Serve with the sun kissing your neck and the bees in your hair.