By Kate Malin

What do an architect and a school teacher know about making syrups? If they are Royal Rose Syrups founders Emily Butters and Forrest Butler, it turns out they know a lot. It all started after Forrest lost his job and began instructing bartending by day and moonlighting as a bartender by night to supplement Emily’s teaching salary. One night after the couple collaborated to make a peach basil syrup, Forrest took it to work at the bar and used it to mix cocktails, which were a huge success. Sensing a great opportunity, the pair took the plunge and started their line of organic simple syrups.

Though the path was not always easy, Emily and Forrest stayed true to their values, using only organic, ethically sourced ingredients, and never adding chemical preservatives, artificial colors, or juice concentrates to their products. The resulting collection of syrups is a thoughtful mix of flavors, often inspired by seasonal ingredients. A love of lavender led Emily to dream up their top seller, Lavender Lemon Simple Syrup, and after testing dozens of batches, she perfected this bright, light, aromatic syrup. Lavender has long been used in folk remedies for insomnia and anxiety, while lemon is a source of nutrients like calcium, potassium, and vitamin C; paired together they are a rejuvenating combination. Emily suggests mixing vodka or gin with this syrup, but uses extend far beyond the bar, to sauces, salad dressings, sodas, and even as a topping for ice cream.

Lavender Lemon Simple Syrup is available at and in stores across the country. Royal Rose is part of the Good Food Awards, a project to honor food and drink producers making the sort of food we all want to eat – tasty, authentic and responsible, and a proud member of the Good Food Merchants Guild, national association uniting American craft food businesses to connect, convene and promote Good Food businesses of all sizes.


From her grassroots work at the Good Food Awards to her continued education at NYU’s Food Studies Master’s Program, Kate Malin brings an unparalleled passion for great food and good people.

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