Sweet Bay Magnolia is a native plant to Virginia with a profoundly floral, slightly citrusy aroma in the same family as bay leaf. This is a floral and unique vinegar; magnolia is an edible plant, but it’s not commonly seen in cooking; despite the prevalence of bay leaf. We forage the leaves and flowers for this vinegar on our property, so there’s no degradation of the vinegar from the time the ingredients are picked to when they’re being fermented.
This is an excellent base for a marinade and does very well in a vinaigrette, but my favorite application is in cocktails and mocktails. There’s a subtle sweetness and overt herbaceousness in the aroma that pairs great with gin, even boosting a pitcher of lemonade and giving it a sophisticated touch.