IKEA is known for being intuitive to small space design and budget-minded shoppers. Apparently they are also in tune with the intense feeling of anxiety one experiences when approximately a third of the way through their store, thus requiring a stiff drink upon departure. So I was thrilled to find they offer two fun and cheap mixers along with those Swedish meatballs and dollar soft serves at check out. You see, everyone wins at the end of the IKEA maze.
Best known for being a sidekick to strawberries in pie, rhubarb alone isn't so popular. In the raw, it's is sour and acidic. But take that iridescent orangey pink stalk, douse it with sugar and a pinch of salt, and bake into a dessert, and voila! How you like me now? That same sweet mixture of melted sugar and tangy stalks can easily be applied to lots of fun cocktails, including the summer staple -the margarita.
IKEA even simplified rhubarb. They took all the work of trimming, cubing, and cooking out of the equation with their SAFT RABARBER ("Rhubarb syrup," for those of us who don't speak Swedish). This is a very sweet rhubarb simple syrup.
Skip the Cointreau and reach for the SAFT RABARBER for a yummy IKEA- inspired happy hour. They also have an Elderflower syrup, both for about $5, making for fun and inexpensive mixers to add to your bar.
Trust me, if you're headed there this weekend you'll surely need a drink afterwards. This one is ideal for a quick and tasty 10-minute happy hour.
1 1/2 to 2 ounces
Lime wedges, for garnish
Pink sea salt for rimming the glass, optional (See Recipe Note)
In an ice-filled shaker, combine the tequila, lime juice, and rhubarb syrup. Shake until well-chilled and strain into glasses filled with ice. Garnish with lime wedge.
If using salt for the rim, run a wedge of lime flesh side facing the rim of the glass all the way around it to lightly moisten. Then dip the rim of the glass into the salt before adding the ice and the mixed drink.
If you want to punch it up a little, a couple dashes of Rhubarb Bitters work perfect here.
(Images: Maureen Petrosky)