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Chris Amirault

Seeking Tiki Ingredients and Worthy Substitutes

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feste   
Andy, where do you buy this 1883 orgeat?

I used to buy it at a local coffee shop, which is where I found out about them; Sweet Eugene's on Harvey Rd here in College Station. Last time I went in there to get raspberry syrup (about 6 months ago), they had all Monin products instead. Nothing against Monin, which is generally of acceptable quality, but they can't really compare to the 1883. I asked them what the deal was and the guy said the company went under or something to that effect and that they were disappointed by the forced switch. A little poking around on the internet yielded this page which seems to have a pretty complete selection of their line. I haven't tried ordering from them but the 1883 site is still up so it may have been a matter of distributor changes or something that forced the local guy to switch.

If anybody successfully orders from that link I'd love to know if it works.

-Andy

After many recommendations I bought the 1883 Orgeat from this website. I have to say, I can't figure out what the big deal is. It seems to me to be thickened sugar syrup flavored with almond extract, just like Monin, Torani and several other brands. When I was in NY recently I tasted some from a deli that bartenders swore by and it was the same.

I know that orgeat used to be almond syrup, as in syrup made from almonds, not just extract. Does anyone in France (or anywhere else) still make it from actual almonds?

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eje   
[...]

I know that orgeat used to be almond syrup, as in syrup made from almonds, not just extract. Does anyone in France (or anywhere else) still make it from actual almonds?

I believe there is a company in the San Francisco area run by a local bartender... Oh what's it called? Oh yeah, Small Hand Foods.

:raz:

That Sicilian stuff mentioned up topic, may have been the last hold out. But it doesn't look like A.G. Ferrari imports it any more.

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feste   
[...]

I know that orgeat used to be almond syrup, as in syrup made from almonds, not just extract. Does anyone in France (or anywhere else) still make it from actual almonds?

I believe there is a company in the San Francisco area run by a local bartender... Oh what's it called? Oh yeah, Small Hand Foods.

:raz:

While I greatly appreciate the plug, Erik, I would love to have a physical frame of reference for my product. I have fantasies of getting some money together and exploring wherever it is in France that orgeat is/was made. Any ideas of a history on it?

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eje   
While I greatly appreciate the plug, Erik, I would love to have a physical frame of reference for my product. I have fantasies of getting some money together and exploring wherever it is in France that orgeat is/was made. Any ideas of a history on it?

Sorry, yeah, it was a bit smart alecky.

My suggestion, if you're interested particularly in Orgeat in France, would be to post in the regional France forum and ask. There are a number of folks there who are quite the experts in French food traditions and history.

In addition, drop the famous Francois Xavier of FX Cuisine a note. He seems to have done a good amount of reading about food history and has always responded whenever I've sent him questions.

As I'm sure you know, Orgeat is part of the family of grain and nut beverages which seem in common to all cultures, whether it is the corn beverages of Native Americans, the oat beverages of the scotch, the rice beverages of the spanish, the Barley Water of the English, the soybean beverages of the Asians, or the Nut Sedge kernel beverages of the Egyptians. Before the invention of leavened bread, the easiest way to get nutrition from grains was to soak or cook them in water and then consume the liquid.

Orgeat, the beverage, began as a blend of ground barley and nuts, often almonds or squash seeds, cooked or soaked in water, then with the plant mass, more or less, strained out. The root of the word Orgeat is thought to be the latin word for a particular type of barley, something like "Hordeum".

The first known published use of a related word in an English Text referred to a type of Barley used to make a beverage. This was some time around 1500.

The first known published use of “Orgeat” referring to a sweetened Barley, Melon Seed, and Almond Syrup was in J. Nott’s “Cook and Confectionary Dictionary” in 1723.


Edited by eje (log)

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eje   

By the way, every historic recipe I've found for Orgeat, suggests grinding the almonds to a paste using a stone mortar and pestle, not chopping them finely with a knife, like the FX Cuisine recipe.

I kind of like the clear almond syrup, but the cloudy almond milk syrup is probably more "authentic".

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Thought I would mention that BevMo is now carrying (at least the one in Colma) Pimento Dram (under the name Allspice Dram). Not cheap but you don't use much. Nice stuff.

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Andy, where do you buy this 1883 orgeat?

A little poking around on the internet yielded this page ...

If anybody successfully orders from that link I'd love to know if it works.

I ordered a few of the 1883 syrups from them (the Coffee Authority) and the service and delivery were great.

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Andy, where do you buy this 1883 orgeat?

A little poking around on the internet yielded this page ...

If anybody successfully orders from that link I'd love to know if it works.

I ordered a few of the 1883 syrups from them (the Coffee Authority) and the service and delivery were great.

Excellent news. Not sure if I mentioned it upthread or not, but to my palate, their passionfruit syrup is even better than the lost lamented Trader Vic's (blasphemy!). 10% passion fruit juice, iirc. Orgeat and raspberry are the other must-haves, and the pineapple is really good as well. Of course all of these can be made at home, but the way I see it there exists a place for extremely high quality commercial syrups somewhere between places that dont even know what orgeat is and those with large, full-time staffs who have the resources to make their own. I happen to work at one such place.

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Wanted to report on this find:

3803183253_570281117f.jpg

This stuff is fantastic, extremely thick and flavorful. 1/2 t goes a loooooong way. As far as I can tell, it's pretty pure stuff:

3803998288_684be782cd.jpg

Honorably produced, indeed.

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"guaranteed on artificial pigment"

Which is cool because I've found a couple of local Brazilian markets that carry bottle passion fruit juice, but it's all orange-colored nectar. The bottle pictured above has the color I would have expected to see.

Edit: "the bottle pictured above" is actually now on the previous page.


Edited by Wild Bill Turkey (log)

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bmdaniel   
Wanted to report on this find:

3803183253_570281117f.jpg

This stuff is fantastic, extremely thick and flavorful. 1/2 t goes a loooooong way. As far as I can tell, it's pretty pure stuff:

3803998288_684be782cd.jpg

Honorably produced, indeed.

So you are using it as is for Passion Fruit syrup?

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lperry   

I'm really surprised that you can find these bottled juices but can't find the frozen pulp. Here, even in the relatively boring Giant store a couple of blocks away, I can get passionfruit pulp (no added anything) in 14 oz frozen packages from both Goya and La Fe brands. With a little simple and a nice silver rum, it makes a delicious daiquiri. Mixed as mentioned above 1:1 with simple, it makes a great passionfruit syrup that I have been using in equivalent proportions to what is listed in the Grog Log and Intoxica. I prefer a dryer drink, and this mixture is fantastic. Have you ventured into the frozen foods to check to see if they carry these? If they do, you will also find coconut, tamarind, pineapple, peach, blackberry, guanabana........

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So you are using it as is for Passion Fruit syrup?

That "juice" isn't quite as sweet as a syrup, so I have to fiddle with it.

I'm really surprised that you can find these bottled juices but can't find the frozen pulp.

I've looked and can't find it. Believe me, I've tried.

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judiu   
So you are using it as is for Passion Fruit syrup?

That "juice" isn't quite as sweet as a syrup, so I have to fiddle with it.

I'm really surprised that you can find these bottled juices but can't find the frozen pulp.

I've looked and can't find it. Believe me, I've tried.

Chris, a suggestion: if the 'main stream' markets don't carry the Goya brand, try the smaller (more grungy) Hispanic markets. You'd be amazed! HTH!

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I live in South Providence and I'm surrounded by small Latino stores. Can't find it. Trust me on this one. Really!

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lperry   

^That's a shame. If you can't find it locally, I've found that the bags will remain frozen for several hours if you stack them in a cooler with a couple of cold packs. They form something of a solid block of fruit/ice.

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bmdaniel   
^That's a shame.  If you can't find it locally, I've found that the bags will remain frozen for several hours if you stack them in a cooler with a couple of cold packs.  They form something of a solid block of fruit/ice.

I'm in Dallas - the hispanic markets seem to carry every brand of goya frozen pulp except passion fruit. Very strange.

Right now I'm trying the Goya passion fruit product from concentrate (20% juice); I don't have a good basis for comparison to a good syrup though.

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Yojimbo   
^That's a shame.  If you can't find it locally, I've found that the bags will remain frozen for several hours if you stack them in a cooler with a couple of cold packs.  They form something of a solid block of fruit/ice.

Just beware! I threw in a bag each of frozen passion fruit and dragon fruit pulp in our cooler on the way to vacation; the dragon fruit leaked as it thawed, and everything, including our parmesan cheese, was dyed a most interesting fuchsia.

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Looking through Beachbum Berry's Sippin' Safari, I see there are several drinks that call for vanilla syrup, either directly or in proprietary mixes. He recommends buying Fee's, but it doesn't seem that hard to add some vanilla extract to simple syrup. Can anyone offer a suggestion as to how much vanilla per volume of (I'm assuming 1:1) simple syrup to make a passable vanilla syrup? Thanks!

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I made a lovely, somewhat potent vanilla syrup the same way he suggests making cinnamon syrup, steeping half a vanilla bean in the hot syrup as it cooled. You could probably get away with a smaller piece of bean.

I also made a 2:1 syrup with a milder vanilla infusion, which makes amazing Mai Tais.

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Looking through Beachbum Berry's Sippin' Safari, I see there are several drinks that call for vanilla syrup, either directly or in proprietary mixes. He recommends buying Fee's, but it doesn't seem that hard to add some vanilla extract to simple syrup. Can anyone offer a suggestion as to how much vanilla per volume of (I'm assuming 1:1) simple syrup to make a passable vanilla syrup? Thanks!

I generally add a generous half oz (or perhaps closer to 3/4 oz) of vanilla extract to about a cup and a half of 1:1 simple (1 cup sugar and 1 cup water).

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