August 09, 2022 by Anna-Bet Stemmet
Orange liqueur cocktails are back, baby! TBH, we’re not too surprised to see it surface as a trend right now – fashion is cyclical, after all! So, if the idea of a liqueur-based cocktail seems a little old school, we’re here to tell you that it has now officially gone around ye olde bend to become shiny and new again. Time to cash in on this season’s hottest reclaimed property, bestie!
See, liqueurs like Grand Marnier are easy to find and effortless to use. This popular cognac-based orange liqueur is known for its high-proof and punchy flavors and comes to the party with delightful notes of orange zest, vanilla bean, and burnt orange that create a structured and concentrated palate. To get you excited about this zesty trend, here are 14 of our favorite drinks made with orange liqueur that are easy enough to shake up at home:
Combining Cognac, orange liqueur, and fresh lemon juice, the Sidecar is so iconic it’s actually named one of the six basic cocktails in a called Cocktail Codex: Fundamentals, Formulas, Evolutions (A Cocktail Recipe Book). In fact, it is said that this elementary drink eventually inspired a variety of other classic cocktails, such as the Cosmopolitan and the Margarita in all their various forms.
Learn more: What are the 6 Basic Cocktails?
The classic Cosmopolitan is one of those evergreen drinks that can be enjoyed as aperitif cocktails, served as the best after-dinner cocktails, and everything in between. Featuring citrus-infused vodka, orange liqueur, lime and cranberry juice, and an orange peel to garnish, it is one of the most popular cocktails from the 60s that remains just as beloved all around the globe today.
3. Cadillac Margarita
Using top-shelf Blanco tequila and Grand Marnier liqueur for an extra dash of sophistication and style, the Cadillac Margarita is gorgeously nuanced and très elegant, darling. It makes a wonderful happy hour or dinner party drink and pairs well with fancy eats like oysters and fresh prawns.
4. Mai Tai
The classy Mai Tai is the cocktail version of a fresh-faced island girl who walks toward you in a summer dress on a fresh morning at the beach, leaving sandy footsteps and the heady smell of orange blossoms in her wake. It’s one of the best fruity cocktails to serve in summer, with a strong rum kick and a powerful tartness, rounded off by a mild sweetness and citrus zing.
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5. Long Island Iced Tea
If you are keen to try orange liqueur cocktails with quite a sizeable kick, we highly recommend the Long Island Iced Tea. Combining equal measures of vodka, white rum, tequila, gin, orange liqueur, simple syrup, and freshly squeezed lemon juice with a splash of soda for effervescence, it is a strong, tasty drink that has endured the test of time.
6. Grand Mimosa
The classic Mimosa is everybody’s brunchtime darling, but if you really want to push out the boat, it might be time to try the Grand Mimosa cocktail. It’s very easy to make and just as effortless to enjoy. Simply add ½ oz Grand Marnier to a Champagne flute, top it off with enough Champagne to fill the glass ⅔ full, and then add orange juice until you reach the top. Freshly squeezed orange juice has the best zing, but we prefer a fine-mesh strainer to ensure that none of the ‘bits’ stay behind.
7. Pomegranate Martini
The Pomegranate Martini is one of those drinks made with orange liqueur that looks super impressive but is nevertheless a cinch to pour, even for a beginner. Sweetly tart, fruity, and light, it’s easy to whip up (even in batches) and adds a hint of fruity glamor to just about any gathering.
8. White Lady
The spookily enchanting White Lady cocktail is a classic mixed drink made with gin, Grand Marnier, fresh lemon juice, and an optional egg white. Frothy and delicate, it makes for a lovely after-dinner drink when the meal has been quite heavy, and something refined is called for.
9. Lemon Drop Martini
Named after a sweet citrus candy that was super popular in the 1970s, the Lemon Drop Martini is a fabulously festive serve that combines SKYY Infusions® Citrus Vodka, Grand Marnier, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Add a sugar rim for an extra sweet finish.
10. Pegu Club
Delightfully boozy, yet sophisticated, the Pegu Club is a 1920s sipper with a gorgeously herbal finish. To make it, add 2 oz Bulldog Gin, 1 oz Grand Marnier, 0.5 oz lime juice, and two dashes of orange bitters to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake until ice cold, strain into a serving glass, garnish with an optional lime wedge, and serve.
11. El Presidente
As its name suggests, the El Presidente Rum Cocktail was first stirred up in honor of a statesman, likely José Miguel Gómez who was the leader of Cuba between 1909 and 1913. This slow sipper is beautifully sweet with a subtle bitter note, laced with a zappy zing of citrus.
12. Blood Orange Vodka Cocktail
During the winter, dramatic deep crimson blood oranges are in season, so making a Blood Orange Vodka cocktail should be at the top of your list. Tangy cocktails with blood orange juice feel like a first-class upgrade from classic OJ with all the added sweetness that blood oranges bring. They are sweeter than regular oranges, adding another flavor dimension, while the bold color makes for pretty drinks. Get muddling with this quick and easy recipe that will wow your dinner party guests.
13. Test Pilot
This magnificently complex and multilayered drink will speak to cocktail lovers who adore a drink with a soft entry, followed by a big mouthful of flavor. To make a Test Pilot cocktail, add 1.5 oz dark rum, 0.75 oz light rum, 0.5 oz orange liqueur, 0.5 oz fresh lime juice, 0.5 oz falernum, a dash of bitters, and five drops of anise liqueur to a blender with a cup of ice. Blend until the ice is crushed, but not smooth. Pour into a rocks glass, and add more crushed ice to fill if required.
14. Vodka Sidecar
The Vodka Sidecar is a zesty twist on the traditional Sidecar cocktail and uses vodka instead of brandy or Cognac. Grand Marnier orange liqueur, fresh lemon juice, and a sugared rim join the party to create a refreshing and zingy cocktail that’s perfect for warmer evenings. A great cocktail for sweet and sour fans.
There you have it – 14 amazing orange liqueur cocktails to try at home. Happy shaking and stirring zesty trendsetters! Remember to tag us on Instagram when you share images of your beautiful cocktails, and sign up for our newsletter to be the first to know when the freshest inspo articles drop.