Serious Eats: Talk

Simple syrup, rimming salt/sugar: which flavors?

I'm going to Chicago next weekend and crashing on a friend's couch. I'd like to bring some kind of hostess gift, but I'm dead broke (and my friend is most definitely not). He's really into cocktails, so I was thinking of doing some flavored simple syrups for mixing drinks and some salts or sugars for rimming cocktail glasses. (We're having a cocktail party while I'm there.) I loved the recent post on tangerine salt, and I like the idea of ginger syrup, but I'm looking for more ideas. Serious drinkers, what flavors of simple syrup would you like to play bartender with?

Also, what's your ideal water/sugar ratio for making simple syrup? I don't want it to be too sweet, so I'm thinking 1.5/1. What do you think?

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