Drink Week, Day Five: Rosemary Lemon and Lavender Honey Syrups

July 5, 2011(updated on October 3, 2018)

rosemary and lavender

Happy 4th of July! Day five of Drink Week has finally arrived! I’m a few days late in posting this one, but I think you’ll find it’s worth the wait. Make sure to check out the previous Drink Week posts, Black Raspberry Syrup, Cherry Bounce and Other Boozy Infusions, No-Cook Sour Cherry Syrup and Black Raspberry Shrub.

rosemary lemon syrup

About a month ago, the activities of my day job took me out to Talula’s Table in Kennett Square, PA. This gourmet food shop/fabulous restaurant is an wonderful place to get lunch or pick up a few to-go items (it’s one of the hardest dinner reservations in the country to get because they only do one seating for 8-12 people a night). While I was there, I discovered that they serve a rosemary latte. It’s your standard latte, spiked with a rosemary syrup and is transcendent. It instantly went on my list for drink week.

lavender honey syrup

For some people, eating lavender flavored foods make them feel like they’re eating soap. I’ve never had that problem. I gobble up lavender flavored candies, cookies and drinks. Nearly a decade ago, some friends introduced me to lavender iced tea and I spent weeks making it (half strong black tea, and half lavender-infused hot water, sweetened with honey). This syrup is a concentrated version of the lavender half of that equation and makes it dead easy to replicate the iced tea on an as-needed basis. It uses both regular sugar and honey, so that it has the flavor of honey, but with the syrup-y consistency of a sugar-based syrup.

straining the lavender syrup

It goes without saying that either of these syrups work beautifully in a glass of sparkling water, in iced tea, in coffee or in a cooling cocktail. Both recipes are after the jump.

Rosemary Lemon Syrup


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 healthy sprigs rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice (optional)


  1. Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Gently crush the rosemary leaves, to help them infuse the syrup. Add rosemary to the pot and let simmer for for 10 minutes, so that it thickens slightly and gets intensely rosemary-flavored. At the end of cooking, add the lemon juice, if using. I recommend the lemon juice if you plan on using the syrup for cocktails or spritzers. If you want to try to recreate the rosemary latte from Talula’s Table, leave it out.
  2. Let syrup cool completely with the rosemary sprigs in the pot. When it’s cool, pour it into a small jar or bottle. If you’d like it to be more intensely rosemary-flavored, leave a sprig in the jar to continue the infusion.


Can be kept in the refrigerator for 10-14 days.



Lavender Honey Syrup


  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup food grade lavender buds


  1. Combine all ingredients in a small pot and bring to a simmer. Let cook for 5-7 minutes and taste. Once the level of lavender tastes good to you, remove the pot from the heat and let cool for 10-15 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a small jar or bottle.


Can be kept in the refrigerator for 10-14 days.


25 responses to “Drink Week, Day Five: Rosemary Lemon and Lavender Honey Syrups”

  1. Oh yum, making the rosemary syrup right now. I think it might be rather good in coldpress coffee with some milk splashed on top. Or poured over a cake. Or with gin.

  2. you had me smiling now- I am one of those soap people, whilst I love the smell of lavender, I cannot associate it with food. The rosemary on the other hand sounds great, will try that!

  3. How lovely! I am definitely trying this tonight!

    Trying not to drink coffee to be healthy, but I might try and turn it into a boozy cocktail (that’s a contradiction isn’t it – no to coffee but yes to alcohol!)

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Helen (from the UK but living in France!) xxx

  4. I am LOVING the lavender syrup right now. I wonder if lavender and rosemary would work together in a syrup?

  5. I’ve made something like the rosemary syrup before, but I use a whole lemon, sliced into rounds. It’s a great deal more lemony, but it makes a great rosemary lemonade.

  6. Hmmm. These both look so good and I have most of the ingredients. Lemon and rosemary in my backyard, plus I have leftover food grade lavender from another experiment.

    • The fruit-based syrups can easily be water bath processed. These others make such small quantities that it’s not really worth it.

  7. Thanks for drink week. I’ve been thinking about trying more syrups and other ways to use herbs. I will definitely try some!

  8. I have been wanting to bake and cook with lavender for some time. This looks like a good start. Do you have a local source for culinary lavender? Thanks for all the inspiration, my canning jars are ready This go!

  9. I’m looking forward to trying these (have some raspberry shrub started in the fridge at the moment). Could you more closely define a “healthy” sprig of rosemary, in inches perhaps?

  10. I was so disappointed when I did not find the fig/pear jam recipe-I have an over abundance of pears and figs-and we all know figs have a limited harvest and shelf life. I am dehydrating as I type. My disappointment turned to joy, however, when I saw all the blogs and other great recipes.
    My last experience canning was last months pit and peal peach jelly. I love using the pits and peals of the peaches. I actually like to tell my boys the name is “Pit stop & Peal Out” jelly.
    Keep on with the posts-not sure I will be a fan of the lavender in food, but with such high recommendations, it is worth a try.

  11. I love your blog! I do have a question about flavoured simple syrups though. Do they freeze well / can you freeze them? Also, how do you know which ones you can hot water process and which not. I’m asking because i’m going to be making them for our farmers market as a way to raise money for music, but I’m hoping to make large batches at a time, and to be able to keep them to use over the course of a month or so. I’de also like to expweriment wioth some of the botanical flavour bases but i want to make sure i can safely store them.

  12. I know it sounds… a bit different… but the rosemary latte sounds fantastic. and I have to say that I really like the smell of rosemary mint too. quite refreshing

  13. I just made Rosemary Lemon syrup the other day.. only I used honey, water and a LOT more lemon juice. I just happened to stumble upon this post link from your home page.. it’s very very yummy with seltzer!

  14. I love the sound of the syrups and have the ingredients on hand! My question is, is it possible to preserve them in a water bath or pressure canner or are they only able to last for the 10 days in the fridge? I’d love to make some of them as gifts now to give in the holidays…

    • Unfortunately, I just don’t know if the syrups are high enough in acid to be safely canned in a boiling water bath canner.

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