If you live here, you have rhubarb

By Jeff Zeitler on Wednesday, July 7th, 2021

Or at least it’s highly likely that you do. You’ve probably made a pie or two from it this year, maybe a bit of jam, perhaps a crisp or even eaten a few stalks by dipping them in a bowl of sugar (my favorite method when I was a kid) but I’m willing to bet there’s a lot of it still looking at you every time you walk out to the backyard.

Well, we want that rhubarb. We want those tough, old stalks and chewy mid-summer portions that won’t be getting any more use this year. Yes, you can cut most of it back and still see it flourish next spring. Rhubarb is a plant that truly loves our Minnesota climate and thrives each year, even when neglected and/or cut back within an inch of its life.

Don’t bring us any stalks with leaves on them, or dirty ends (those spoil the wine) or any stalks that are yellow and limp and dried out (sadly, there are lots of those this year). Once you exclude all that, we’ll be thrilled to see you walk in the door with a bag filled with juicy rhubarb stems. So happy that we’ll trade you rhubarb wine for your fresh-picked rhubarb!

Here’s how it works: Bring it in during our working hours, we’ll weigh it, then give you 10% off a bottle of rhubarb wine for each pound. We may reject any dirty, leafy or wilted stalks, but the rest automatically earn you a discount, all the way up to a free bottle if you bring us 10 pounds!

Excited? Start picking! You have Wednesday, Thursday, Friday from 4-9, Saturday from 1-9 or Sunday 1-5 to bring it in. Bring it right up to our bar and ask the bartender to weigh it for you. We can take care of the rest.

Not the possessor of a prodigious plot of pie-plants? Well, we still have stuff to bring you around this weekend. How about slushies? We’ll make some rhubarb wine slushies on Saturday (and other boozy ones the rest of the week) and will have non-alcoholic lemonade slushies on tap for $1 again, as a reprise for those who missed it last time. And yes, kids are, as always, welcome to come with their grownups and enjoy a lemonade slushie this week.

Perhaps trivia is your thing? The Mandalorian is our trivia topic this week (yes, really!) and July 22, Harry Potter trivia returns, and we expect it to be busy as always, though much less so in the summer. If you like a quieter trivia night (and a better chance of winning!) check out our trivia now, while half the state is on vacation. It’s pretty chill, but still a lot of fun.

What would you think of having a butterbeer slushie for Harry Potter trivia week? We could do it, but you’d have to let us know that you want it. Perhaps a mango lassi slushie? We’re having fun with this, and there’s still a lot of summer left, so give us your feedback. We’re a small family business, so your input will be listened to, and probably even acted upon!

As far as safety goes, we’ve noticed that our portion of Lake Street has been fairly quiet lately. While reports of not-so-good things happening are persisting in other parts of the city, our street, at least by my observation, has been more peaceful than usual this spring and summer. We hope this continues- and hope you’ll give us and other Lake Street businesses a visit this summer. There certainly are a lot of places around here that could use it!

And as far as virus safety goes? We’ve taken down some of our plexiglass, but kept other portions up. We still have the socially distant checkout, but as the city’s mask mandate has expired, we no longer require customers to wear masks when entering. Our bartenders still mask up, out of an abundance of caution, but you won’t have to. If you’re still a bit leery about being around other unmasked customers, try out our patio in the back. It should be a perfect weekend for it, and you can admire Gita’s flower display while you’re there.

That’s all for now. Hope to see you in the taproom, or at least see you briefly as you pick up some fermented goodness on the way up north.


Jeff and Gita Z.