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Grand Marnier is a French orange liqueur that adds sophistication to everything it touches. Here’s more about it and how to use it.

Grand Marnier
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Looking at buying a bottle of Grand Marnier, or simply wondering what it is? This top shelf liquor has a beautiful bottle with signature red ribbon and stamped wax seal. But what’s inside the bottle, and what cocktails to do you use it for? Can you swap it out for other orange liqueurs, like Cointreau or Triple Sec? Here’s more about this fancy French liqueur, what it tastes like and how to drink it.

What is Grand Marnier?

Grand Marnier is a brand of French liqueurs, best known for its product Cordon Rouge (Cordon Rouge means “red ribbon”). This French orange liqueur is a mixture of Triple Sec and Cognac and has a sophisticated, developed flavor.

Grand Marnier was invented in 1880 by Louis-Alexandre Marnier Lapostolle. He had the idea to combine French cognac with a rare variety of bitter orange from the Caribbean. Luckily he had famous friends to help him pull it off. His pal Cesar Ritz, founder of the Ritz Hotel, helped him come up with the name and bottle design. This fancy liqueur was even served on the Titanic; we know because a bottle was discovered in the wreckage (source).

How do you say Grand Marnier? Say Gran Mar-NYAY.

What does Grand Marnier taste like?

Grand Marnier tastes like orange-flavored brandy, with notes of vanilla and oak. It has a heavier, more complex flavor than other orange liqueurs like Triple Sec and Cointreau.

Are there any Grand Marnier substitutesLook for the real thing if at all possible. If it’s not available, substitute it with equal parts of Cointreau, Cognac or brandy, or Triple Sec. Here’s more about the differences between Cointreau vs Grand Marnier.

Why we like it

Grand Marnier is full of rich, developed flavor and intrigue from the Cognac, and makes any cocktail taste that much sexier. It’s strong enough at 40% ABV that you can drink it in a snifter like a Cognac. It’s not a must in a basic liquor collection, like Cointreau. But we’d recommend it for the adventurous home mixologist.

How much does it cost?

Compared to other liquors, Grand Marnier is expensive. A 375 ml bottle costs around $15 to $20, and a 750 ml bottle costs around $30 to $45. You’ll use it in small amounts, so one bottle lasts quite a while. We recommend opting for the 375 ml size.

You can drink Grand Marnier neat in a brandy snifter, or as an upgrade to orange liqueur in cocktail recipes. Mix it with champagne or Prosecco for a bubbly spin, or add soda water for a make-shift spritzer. Or, try in one of these popular Grand Marnier cocktails:

Other cocktails

You can also use this French orange liqueur in the following drinks:

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Prosecco cocktail

Grand Marnier & Champagne

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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x


This Prosecco cocktail is sophisticated and classy, with citrus notes and lots of bubbles. It’s easy to whip up for parties and celebrations!


  • 4 ounces (½ cup) champagne (or other sparkling wine)
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) Grand Marnier
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • Garnish: orange twist


  1. Add the Grand Marnier and lemon juice to a champagne flute and swirl to combine.
  2. Tilt the glass at an angle and pour in the Prosecco. Garnish with an orange twist.
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Poured
  • Cuisine: Cocktails
  • Diet: Vegan

More liquor guides

Wondering what Aperol is? Or St Germain or Chartreuse? Want the best brand of bourbon or how to make a whiskey sour?  We’ve got you! Here are a few more guides to liquor:

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. Cate Burger says:

    Will the limited releases of wild cherry or peach raspberry ever be released again?

    1. Alex Overhiser says:

      I’m not sure!