How long do your syrups last?
Small Hand Foods bottles are printed with a “best by” date. We use this date so that stores will rotate their stock. This does not mean that if it is past that date that the syrup is bad! As long as the seal is not compromised, the syrup will remain safe to drink for many years. The seal can be compromised if an unopened bottle is dropped, held in a hot car, or otherwise damaged. The syrup can change over time, however. This is especially apparent with the Pineapple Gum Syrup, as the clear glass bottles allow UV rays to penetrate and begin to darken the color of the pineapple juice. This will not make the syrup unsafe to drink, but it may not taste as “fresh” as it would closer to the date we made it.
Once opened, a bottle of Small Hand Foods syrup can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on storage conditions. Temperature, frequent opening and closing, and local bacteria and yeasts can all affect the life of an opened bottle of syrup. Kept refrigerated and used only now and then, as they might be in someone’s home, syrups may last a couple months. Kept at room temperature and used frequently, as they would be in a bar setting, bottles will usually last a couple of weeks. In either case, it’s easy to tell when syrup has gone off: if it develops mold, gets fizzy, or smells like cider vinegar, throw it out. Our syrups are made from food, so treat them as such and your cocktail experience will benefit!
Do I need to refrigerate the syrups after opening?
Yes! Breaking the seal exposes the syrup to air. Keeping your open syrup capped and in the fridge greatly reduces natural contaminants from entering.
Why does my syrup look separated?
It’s natural! Real food ingredients like nuts and spices contain oils and proteins, unlike syrups made with only flavorings. Sometimes the fiber from our pomegranates will settle to the bottom of a bottle of Grenadine, or the almond oil in our Orgeat rises to the top. Give each bottle a quick shake before using.
How did Small Hand Foods get started?
Learn more on our About page.
What is Orgeat?
Orgeat is an almond syrup that dates back to the Middle Ages. Back then, it was made with barley (orge is the French word for barley) and used as a substitute for milk before refrigeration. At some point, the part of the world that is now France and Spain and Italy started adding almonds to make it taste better, then ultimately dropped the barley altogether. As it spread across the world different cultures added their own influences. Toward the middle east rosewater is used to flavor it. The Catalan version, orxata, uses tiger nuts. Mexican horchata blends almonds and rice. We make our Orgeat the way it was made in France centuries ago, with a mixture of sweet and bitter almonds, orange flower water and a bit of brandy to flavor it.
Are your products gluten-free? Vegan?
Yes, all of our syrups are vegan and gluten-free.
Can your syrups be used for non-alcoholic drinks? How about in food recipes?
Yes! The syrups add all-natural flavors to any drink, whether it contains alcohol or not. They are also excellent in desserts. Our Passion Fruit Syrup is delicious drizzled over vanilla ice cream or used in mousse or custard. Charles Phan even used Small Hand Foods Orgeat in his almond cake with almond cream in his Iron Chef America battle!
Do the syrups contain any allergens or are they made in a facility that also handles allergenic ingredients?
Our Orgeat is made from real almonds, and we use the same equipment for the rest of our syrups. We clean and sanitize thoroughly between batches! We do not use dairy, soy, wheat, eggs, fish, shellfish or peanuts.