Jean-Baptiste Lapostolle began his distillery in 1827 in Neauphle-le-chateau in France where he produced a liqueur using a variety of fruit.
Along came Louis Alexandre Marnier, from a family of wine-makers in the Sancerre region of France. Louis married Monsieur Lapostolle’s granddaughter in 1876. I like to think he stole her heart but maybe he persuaded her with the delicious liqueur her grandfather made.
The Lapostolle and Marnier went into business together and put the name Curacao Marnier to their new orange flavoured liqueur.
Marnier insisted on importing the finest oranges from the Caribbean.
Interestingly, there is an island in the Caribbean, off the northern coast of Venezuela, named Curacao. It makes up the ABC Islands: Aruba, Curacao and Bonaire. Very much under the radar, give it a try.
Curacao actually means a liqueur flavored with the peel from bitter oranges.
Meanwhile, back in 1880, Marnier’s friend, hotel owner, Cesar Ritz, yes THE Ritz, tried the liqueur and declared it should be called Grand due to its grand taste and to disregard the trend of everything being ‘petit’ all over France. Petit Café, Petit Chateau, etc.
Thus, we now know it as Grand Marnier.
Great in so many drinks: B-52’s, Margaritas or The Batiste which is made with 1 oz gold rum, 1 1/2 oz GM in a chilled glass.
Or try it simply with ginger ale.
To enjoy it in a dessert, try a Grand Marnier Souffle! See the recipe for a Chocolate GM Sauce, too.
To celebrate the famous liqueur, find yourself a cozy French restaurant anywhere in the world, perhaps a ‘Petit Cafe’ to enjoy a Grand Marnier.
Posted by Kim Ratcliffe-Doe on July 14, 2017