What is Orgeat?
Orgeat is a non-alcoholic syrup originally made from almonds that can sweeten drinks like mocktails and cocktails. It’s prepared from sugar, almonds, orange flower water and has been used in bartending and cocktails for a long time. The English and Australian Cookery Book, published in 1864, had the first documented recipe for Orgeat. It’s been used in cocktails for a long time, but it’s best known for its use in the Mai Tai.
What is the correct pronunciation of Orgeat? In your finest French accent, pronounce Or-ZHAAT, where the “ZH” is the same as the J in the name Jacque.
Making Mai Tai!
What is the secret to a great Mai Tai? Almonds. Orgeat, made from chopped almonds, is the drink’s key ingredient. The nutty concoction has grown in popularity among bartenders across the world in recent years. While the syrup is commonly made with almonds, bartenders have discovered that it can be made with various nuts, including peanuts and pistachios, and rice and red beans.
Mai Thai Recipe
- 3 tbsp Rum
- 1 tbsp Orange Liqueur Grand Marnier or Curacao Cointreau
- 1 tbsp Lime Juice
- 2 tbsp Orgeat Syrup
- 1 tbsp Dark Rum
- Fresh Mint, Pineapple Slice, Lime Wedges, Umbrella, Cocktail Cherry For garnishing
- Pour the orange liqueur, lime juice, Orgeat syrup, and aged rum into a cocktail shaker.
- Add ice cubes, shake until chill, and combined well.
- Pour the drink into a highball cocktail glass and top it with dark rum.
- Garnish with your favorite garnishing.
Regardless of the nut you choose, the syrup pairs well with both brown spirits and Tiki drinks. These 8 Orgeat cocktails demonstrate the incredible range of drinks one can obtain from just one Orgeat syrup.
1. Trinidad Sour
Two tablespoons of Angostura bitters are used as the base rather than the dash or two used in most cocktails. Orgeat is the second key ingredient, with a shot of rye whiskey and lemon juice added for good taste. It may sound bizarre, but once you try this Orgeat cocktail, there is no going back.
2. Mai Tai
The Mai Tai is the most well-known Orgeat cocktail. Mai Tai is a traditional Taiwanese Tiki drink in tribute to “Trader Vic” Bergeron in the 1940s. In the meantime, many varieties have emerged, including those served at Latitude 29 and Smuggler’s Cove. However, the most famous version calls for white rum combined with orange curaçao, Orgeat, lime juice, and a dash of dark rum.
3. Holy Water
This cocktail features infused Jamaican gold rum, grapefruit juices, cognac, lemon, Orgeat, and lime, and a float of Angostura bitters on top and is served at the Ace Hotel in New Orleans. For a once in a lifetime experience, the bartender fills a half-lime garnish with green Chartreuse and a sugar cube, then ignites it on fire that gives the drink its extra zesty kick.
4. Tender Nob
In this stirred cocktail, Kevin Diedrich of San Francisco’s Pacific Cocktail Haven combines Tender Nob Cognac, rye, two Amari, and walnut Orgeat. The Orgeat serves as a sweetening agent while also providing a nutty after-taste to the drink.
In this version of an Old Fashioned, bourbon and Mezcal are mixed, followed by Angostura, Aztec bitter chocolates, and Orgeat syrup. Originally prepared by bartender Jeremy Lake in California, this Orgeat cocktail is served with an orange garnish, crushed cinnamon, and cranberry to add a fruity flavor.
6. Bourbon Lift
This bubbly cocktail, which is like an adults-only version of a New York egg cream, combines coffee liqueur, bourbon, heavy cream, and Orgeat, and finally some club soda to finish it off.
This cocktail blends Jack Daniel’s Tennessee whiskey with Coca-Cola, peanut Orgeat, and a garnish of salted peanuts. It is inspired by the Southern practice of putting peanuts into a can of Coke.
8. Early Start
This unique take on a Gin Sour combines aquavit, Orgeat, lime juice, an egg white, and a French sorrel leaf, with a garnish of a mint leaf.
Explaining the Taste of Orgeat
The flavor of Orgeat is nutty with a tinge of citrus. It gives cocktails drinks a special complexity, and it’s so unique that there’s no other good substitute. Search for it in your local liquor store or order it online: it’s worth the money.
Can I Make Orgeat at Home?
No. That is, at least, our opinion! Homemade Orgeat is possible, but it takes several hours and multiple stages. You’ll also need a lot of almonds and a bottle of orange flower water, which will cost more than buying a bottle.
Why not buy Orgeat, an easy-to-find cocktail ingredient that can be found in most liquor stores? It’s only $10, and there are a lot of great brands to choose from. Buying store-bought is also more shelf-stable. So, instead of making a homemade recipe, buy a bottle!
How Much Does Orgeat Cost?
Orgeat’s bottle usually costs around $10, which is quite reasonable. However, we prefer using a Small Hand Foods 8-ounce bottle, which has an amazing flavor.