French Kiss Cocktail

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Cocktail Type


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French Kiss cocktails

The French Kiss Cocktail is a delicious reminder that life can be sweet and spicy at the same time. It’s a gorgeous combination of zesty orange juice over-layed with delightful hints of star anise, fennel, coriander, and mint, laced with the sweetness of grenadine.  

Super simple to whip up, and sure to make a splash at just about any get-together, this tempting drink has a history shrouded in mystery. Even dyed-in-the-wool cocktail connoisseurs can’t quite agree on where it had its origins, and technically there are actually three different cocktails that are known as a French Kiss—one spicy, one creamy, and one with a berry-based flavour profile.  

In short, think of this beguiling cocktail as a shutter-shy starlet with two body doubles who only comes out to play when she feels like it. We like to think this one is the original, simply because it’s so amazing, so let’s call that cocktail gospel, and stick to it, shall we?  



Stash your glass in the freezer for an hour or two to ensure an ice sip


For an extra citrusy cocktail, swap out the anise liqueur with Grand Marnier


Pair this kiss perfectly with spicy or rich starters or small bites for a delicious match



1 Person

30 Ml

1 Oz

1 Parts

20 Ml

0.67 Oz

0.67 Parts

anise liqueur 
60 Ml

2 Oz

2 Parts

orange juice (freshly squeezed) 
teaspoons of grenadine syrup 
Orange slices and cinnamon stick to garnish (optional) 



Combine the vodka, anise liqueur, and orange juice in a shaker with ice, shake until cold, and fine strain into a chilled glass 


Pour grenadine into the centre of the drink where it will sink


Garnish with orange slices and a cinnamon stick 

French Kiss cocktail garnish & serving tips

Serve our starlet in a chilled coupe or cocktail glass, icy cold preferably if you can. Stash it in the freezer for an hour or two or pop a few ice cubes along with a little water to chill the glass quickly before tipping it out to serve. 

For all the garnish glam, cut ever so thin slices of orange in half. Roll it up, poke a cocktail skewer through and balance it over the top of the glass. A cinnamon stick straight into the glass for extra spice 

Customise your Kiss cocktail

Here are a few fun ways in which you can customise the French Kiss drink to suit your own preferences, or those of some adventurous guests:  

Swap out the vodka for gin

Don’t have vodka around the house? Go for a London Dry Gin. We actually love the way the herbaceous notes of a nice gin overlay with the spicy notes from the anise-based liqueur.  

Try a different liqueur

Anise seed is quite a strong flavour, and often an acquired taste, so you might also consider using a different liqueur to build your own cocktail. Something like Grand Marnier will work a treat. Just be sure to taste test the liqueur alongside your other ingredients if you are planning to swap out more than one component to check that the flavours go together.  

Use another kind of juice

If you aren’t all that partial to a citrus-based drink but would still like to give the French Kiss a go, try using a different fruit juice instead. Pineapple juice and apple juice could both work well, especially when freshly squeezed or pressed. In fact, you could even push out the boat and try something novel like kombucha, although this will also impart some fizziness to the drink and change it up even more.  

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The French Kiss Cocktail is quite zesty, and after-dinner drinks often tend to be on the creamier end of the spectrum, but we like to think that this pretty drink is versatile enough to enjoy at any time. The subtle spiciness that underpins its flavour profile is certainly strong enough to round off a good meal, so go ahead and try it!