Orange liqueur cocktail with an orange peel garnish
The Ultimate Bottle Guide To Grand Marnier
Grand Marnier is a French liqueur made of Cognac wine and orange liqueur, creating a drink that's delicate, rich, sweet, bitter, strong, sharp, and smooth.
The drink was created in Paris in the 1880s after a marriage between the Lapostolle family, who made fruit liqueurs, and the Marnier family, leading wine distributors.
Its citrusy reputation may lead you to think of Grand Marnier as light and fruity, but rather, it’s richer, sweet like syrup, with a distinct bitterness.
Coming in at 40% alcohol by volume, the drink is an ideal digestif served neat, while its undertones of honey, vanilla, and toasted oak make it great for cocktails.
The Grand Marnier recipe took over ten years to perfect, starting with cognac made of ugni blanc grapes double distilled in copper stills and aged in oak casks.
From there, the liqueur is made of hand-picked bitter oranges. The peels are sun-dried, soaked in alcohol, and distilled before it's blended with the cognac and aged for a month.
Enjoying Grand Marnier
The great thing about Grand Marnier is there are a plethora of ways to enjoy it, from neat or over ice to cocktails like sidecars and margaritas.
You can use it as a substitute for other orange liqueurs like Cointreau or Triple Sec, although Grand Marnier has a creamier texture and richer flavor.
Given its layered flavor, Grand Marnier is great for more than just cocktails, and it works well in foods from desserts to meat marinades.
Stir Grand Marnier into desserts for a sweet flavor, drizzle it over sweets, use it as a glaze for meats like chicken, whisk it into a compote, or use it as the base for a flambé.