A Tropical Tonic -- The Cocogin
Tiki Mystery -- The Mai Tai

Or What? -- Orgeat Syrup

Orgeat syrupWhiskey Tango Foxtrot?  If you're as profane as I am, that's probably what you first thought or exclaimed when you saw the word "orgeat" on a menu. Orgeat (pronounced or-jah; it's a French word that originally referred to barley) is an almond syrup and a quintessential ingredient in cocktails such as a Mai Tai.  You can buy pre-made stuff, but why not have a DIY product that tastes better?  Thanks to Kevin Liu and his book Craft Cocktails At Home for this wonderfully simple recipe.

6.5 ounces almond milk (I used Pacific Brand organic)
3 ounces sugar
1/8 teaspoon (8 drops) almond extract
1/16 teaspoon (4 drops) orange blossom water

Combine all of the ingredients in a container and stir.  Seriously, that's it.  Simple, right?  Don't forget to refrigerate whatever you don't use immediately.

Orange blossom water, which is not remotely the same as orange water, is the trickiest ingredient to find, but it is out there.  Fortunately I learned about a Turkish grocery near my office that carried the stuff. 

Making my own orgeat syrup gives me the satisfaction of accomplishment, just as when I make super simple syrup or glorious grenadine.  You can get the same sense of accomplishment, and you'll have a fine base for a cocktail or two.  Win win!

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