Quince & Apple's New Rhubarb-Hops Syrup

Quince & Apple's versatile and unusual new syrup

Quince & Apple's new rhubarb-hops syrup is almost too usable.

We've used it to color clear spirits, stirred it into sparkling wine, and even mixed it into wheat beer. Good luck keeping this one on the shelf.

The syrup is a follow-up to the Madison-based jam company's first syrup: bold, tart cherry grenadine, made with dried Door County cherries, a product that is an equally essential component to a well-stocked home bar.

The rhubarb-hops syrup ($13 for 250 ml) is lively and complex. German Hallertau and Citra hops amplify the stalk's grassy, citrusy notes. This is a bottle that smells like spring.

What to do with it? Shake it with gin and lime, and top with soda or tonic water. Pair it with grapefruit juice and club soda. Drizzle it over vanilla ice cream and the last of the summer's berries and stone fruit.

Find the syrup at Green Grocer, Provenance and Marion Street Cheese Market, order it online, or as part of Q&A's new cocktail box ($25), a quarterly package with syrup, bitters and mixers.

Next quarter's bundle will feature the cherry grenadine. The following installment may include a syrup made with tequila in mind: chile-honey syrup inspired by a recent trip to Mexico.