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Orange Liqueurs

Other then color, is there a difference between Triple Sec, Orange Curacao and Blue Curacao. My local store only carries Marie Brizard's Orange Curacao. I picked up the other two in the Leroux brand. What is ya'll opinion of Leroux? Thanks

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  1. any marie brizard cordial compared to leroux brand is akin to drinking cognac compared to e & j brandy. sometimes prices don't lie.

    3 Replies
    1. re: byrd

      That is kinda what I figured...I think it is strange that they care about 8 of Brizard's products, but not their Triple Sec. Guess I need to bug the manager about it.

      1. re: rafjr00

        Marie Brizard also makes a passable Pear William. Not the fancy with the pear in the bottle, but tasty at a fair price. They used to- I havn't looked for it in years- make an orange liquer called "Orangero", which I thought was more orangey than Triple Sec.

        1. re: Veggo

          They have one that is called Grand Orange. There is also a Mandarin Liqueur, but neither is at the store I go to. I need to see if there are any other stores around me.

    2. Curacao is usually a hair sweeter than triple sec, but I doubt you could tell the difference once mixed into a margarita. The only difference between the orange and blue curacao is the color.

      4 Replies
      1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

        That depends entirely on the Triple Sec and the Curaçao involved. Cheap junk like Leroux and DeKuyper Triple Sec tends to be far sweeter than just about any quality orange liqueur on the market. They're syrupy in texture, and leave sugar crystals on the spout. Probably hurt you the next day, too.

        It's well worth spending a couple extra bucks for a better orange liqueur: Cointreau, Marie Brizzard Triple Sec, and Luxardo Triple Sec are my standbys. Blue Curaçao seemed like a cute idea when I was in college; Windex-colored cocktails have since lost their charm for me.

        1. re: MC Slim JB

          I guess a taste test of orange liquers performed by Cook's Illustrated only proves that taste is well, just a matter of taste.

          The CI tasters rated the Leroux Triple Sec as the best rasting, over Hiram Walker Curacao, LaBelle Orange, Cointreau and the orange infused Cognac, Grand Marnier.

          1. re: MC Slim JB

            Is a reputable brand of Curacao interchangeable with Cointreau?

            1. re: equinoise

              To some degrees yes as long as you're not drinking them straight. Not all orange liqueurs use the same orange peels as sources (there's a lot of variety in oranges and their peels), and many use different base spirits and other flavorings.

              A decent curacao is Curacao of Curacao. You could easily tell it apart from Cointreau tasting it straight but not so much in a Pegu Club.

          1. re: KaimukiMan

            I just passed up Cointreau this afternoon for use in sangria. Love it, but it was three times as much as Triple Sec. When it comes to the higher end products, for a few bucks more, I'd rather have Grande Marnier over Cointreau.

          2. There are orange liqueurs and Orange Liqueurs. Forget about those cheap triple secs and such. Personally I like the super premium rhum based orange liqueurs from the Caribbean like Santa Teresa Rhum Orange Liqueur made with the amazing aged and mellow Santa Teresa Rhum or the just as good but different Clement Rhum Creole Shrubb Orange Liqueur made with musky aged Clement Rhum Agricole. They make orange liqueurs like Grand Marnier and Cointreau seem second best.

            3 Replies
            1. re: JMF

              availability in the ny area?

              1. Mathilde Orange XO Liqueur, made by a French Cognac producer (that might be redundant) is another one I tried recently and like a lot. It's more akin to Grand Marnier in that it is brandy-based, but seems to be dryer and has a nicer orange flavor and less pronounced wood-aged flavor. Good stuff, looks to be about $20 for a 750ml retail.


                2 Replies
                1. re: MC Slim JB

                  Thoughts on how that might taste in a Sidecar?

                  1. re: isadorasmama

                    I'd try it! The trick with the Sidecar is fiddling with the sweetness level: balance is all. I'd rather start with a dry orange liqueur like this one and adjust up with simple syrup. This stuff has a pretty pale amber color, so it wouldn't affect appearance significantly.


                2. What about Combier? I had a bottle of this in my hand the last time I bought Cointreau. I didn't end up trying the new thing, but then it's not new at all, just new to the PA state stores, or at least I'd never seen it in there before.

                  The prices were similar. Actually, Cointreau usually sells for a few $$ more per 750, but it was on sale and thus a buck less than the Combier, or something like that. This is relative; I have to spend $30 to get Cointreau on sale, and the regular price is now up to $35.

                  Just curious how they compare. They're both from France and Combier appears to be older. The last time I tried something other than the Cointreau, though (Patron Citronge) it wasn't nearly as good. But it seems like Combier should be closer.

                  Guess I'll just have to try it next time :-) but just curious if anyone else had.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: CrazyOne

                    Combier is the original triple sec as far as I know. Just sat down this week with the owner of the company and did tastings of it and some new products for the US, not new in general, but for US. I really like Combier a lot.

                    1. re: JMF

                      You're the one that turned me on to Creole Shrubb . See posts above. Luckily, the local wine shop keeps it in stock when available. Perfect accompaniment with your finest cigar.

                  2. It's impossible to say and stupidly expense but there are finer grades of Grand Marnier using older cognacs as a blend. The Cuvee du Cent Cinquantenaire Grand Marnier comes in at about $220 but--and I've shelled out the money to try it--an astonishing experience when you drink it. It's a blend with 40yr old cognac along with the traditional orange liqueur (regular Cordon Rouge Grand Marnier uses much younger cognac--no age statement I think).

                    I wouldn't dare put it in any sort of drink... it's to be drunk neat. But it's a fabulous liqueur. It won a string of four double-gold medals in a row at San Francisco's World Competition.

                    But stupidly expensive unless you're really into this stuff.

                    --Neal (Proof66)

                    1. The recent addition of Ferrand Dry Curacao is noteworthy - as the name says, it's drier and more complex - really makes a difference in a Mai Tai or Sidecar - $40 for .75 L in Boston area at Brix on Broad St. downtown (I had to ask for it - it was in the closed closet).

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