Grand Smash Cocktail Recipe

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Grand Smash Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 16, 2024


The Grand Smash is a modern twist on the classic Whiskey Smash, substituting whiskey with Grand Marnier for a unique citrus and cognac flair. This cocktail is a favorite among those who appreciate a balance of fresh mint and the complexity of aged spirits. It's particularly popular in upscale bars and among patrons who enjoy a sophisticated, yet refreshing beverage.

  • Originates from the classic Smash cocktail family
  • Incorporates Grand Marnier for a distinctive orange essence
  • Ideal for warm weather and outdoor gatherings

How Grand Smash Tastes?

The Grand Smash offers a harmonious blend of sweet and tart flavors, with a robust orange note from the Grand Marnier. The muddled mint adds a refreshing herbal undertone, while the lemon wedges provide a zesty kick. It's a full-bodied cocktail with a lingering, sophisticated finish.

Interesting facts about Grand Smash

  • The Grand Marnier used in this cocktail is a blend of cognac and distilled essence of bitter orange.
  • The Smash cocktail family dates back to the 19th century.
  • Adding a splash of soda can transform the Grand Smash into a lighter, more effervescent drink.


Grand Marnier

A luxurious blend of cognac and distilled essence of bitter orange, Grand Marnier is the star of this show. 2 oz is just enough to shine without toppling the senses. Less, and it whispers; more, and it screams!

Mary Mitkina

Lemon Wedges

Citrus here is like a zesty cheerleader for the rich Grand Marnier, keeping the palate alert with, let's say, 'sour power.' Without it, the cocktail loses its bright edge. Fancy a change? Try lime for a tart twist.

Alex Green

Mint Leaves

Mint is the cool kid on the block - literally adding a breath of fresh air to the mix. It's about balance here; too little, your drink's a wallflower; too much, and you're in a chewing gum commercial.

Emma Rose


Our chilly friend ice is non-negotiable - it chills, it dilutes, it tames. Forget it, and the Grand Smash is more 'lukewarm slap' than smashing good time.

Mary Mitkina

Soda (optional)

A splash for those who prefer their drinks less sweet and more effervescent. Think of it like the sidekick that helps the hero sparkle, just a nudge towards refreshment.

Alex Green

Recipe. How to make Grand Smash Drink

  1. In a shaker, gently muddle the lemon wedges and mint leaves to release their flavors.
  2. Add the Grand Marnier and fill the shaker with ice.
  3. Shake well until the mixture is chilled.
  4. Fill a glass with ice and strain the cocktail into the glass.
  5. If desired, top with a splash of soda.
  6. Garnish with a sprig of mint and serve immediately.

Pro Tips

  • Always use fresh mint and lemon for the most vibrant flavor.
  • When muddling the mint, be gentle to avoid bitterness from over-crushing the leaves.
  • Chill the glass before serving to keep the cocktail cool longer.

Perfect Pairings


  • Cheese boards: The citrus notes from the lemon nicely cuts through rich, creamy cheeses.
  • Grilled shrimp: A smoky and slightly sweet complement that goes well with the herbaceous flavors.


  • Lemon sorbet: Echoing the lemon in the Grand Smash, it makes for a refreshing end to a meal.
  • Almond biscotti: Its nutty and crunchy texture pairs nicely with the smoothness of the cocktail.

Other Drinks

  • Chardonnay: A crisp white wine goes well if you lean towards wine next, maintaining a citrusy thread.

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What you could change in Grand Smash

  • Grand Marnier: Can be substituted with other orange liqueurs like Cointreau or Triple Sec, though the flavor profile will slightly change.
  • Mint Leaves: In a pinch, you can use a few drops of mint extract, but fresh mint is highly recommended for the best flavor and presentation.

Explore all drinks starting with G here

And of course - twists🍹

Spicy Grand Smash

  • Replace lemon with lime and add a few slices of jalapeno. Gently muddle those with the mint before adding the Grand Marnier. This'll give you a fiery kick with every sip, shaking up the original with a bit of heat.

Berry Grand Smash

  • Muddle some fresh raspberries along with the lemon and mint. Their sweet tartness will berried deep in your soul, offering a fruity take on the classic taste.

Elderflower Grand Smash

  • Add a splash of elderflower liqueur to the grand mix. This floral twist dances delicately with the orange notes of Grand Marnier, offering a bloom of flavor.

In case you forgot basics how to make Grand Smash

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

The key to proper muddling is to crush the ingredients just enough to release their flavors and not overdo it. Over-muddling can result in a bitter taste, especially with herbs.

Learn everything on how to muddle

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Grand Smash

What type of glass is recommended for serving the Grand Smash?

A rocks glass or an Old Fashioned glass is typically used to serve the Grand Smash, enhancing its visual appeal and making it easier to muddle the ingredients directly in the glass if preferred.

Can I use bottled lemon juice instead of fresh lemon wedges?

While fresh lemon wedges are preferred for their freshness and the oils in the peel, bottled lemon juice can be used in a pinch. However, the taste may be slightly different and less vibrant.

What is the role of ice in a cocktail, and how much should I use?

Ice is crucial in cocktails as it chills the drink, dilutes it to the perfect strength, and provides a refreshing element. As a general rule, fill the shaker or the glass with ice to ensure an adequately chilled and diluted cocktail.

Is the Grand Smash suitable for batch preparation for parties?

Yes, the Grand Smash can be made in larger quantities for parties. However, it's best to muddle the mint and lemons in smaller batches and combine everything just before serving to maintain freshness.

How long does it take to properly muddle the mint and lemon in the Grand Smash?

Proper muddling usually takes about 30 seconds, but it's more about technique than time. Gently press and twist the muddler until you can smell the aromatic oils being released, being careful not to over muddle.

Can I add sugar or sweetener to the Grand Smash?

The Grand Smash typically does not require additional sweeteners due to the sweetness of Grand Marnier. However, if you prefer a sweeter drink, you may add a small amount of simple syrup to taste.

What non-alcoholic beverages pair well with the Grand Smash for non-drinkers at my event?

For a non-alcoholic pairing, consider a citrus-flavored sparkling water or a lemon-lime soda to mirror the refreshing characteristics of the Grand Smash.

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