A Brief History of Triple Sec

From Margaritas to Mai Tais, Cosmopolitans to Kamikazes, Triple Sec is an important ingredient in many cocktails.

While you may not think much of this spirit, you may be surprised to learn it has quite the history.

Combier Liqueur d'OrangeTriple Sec was created in 1834 by Jean-Baptiste Combier in France’s Loire Valley.  It’s a mix of Haitian orange peels, Normandy sugar beets, secret family ingredients and pure alcohol.  He called it “Combier Liqueur d’Orange.”  The liqueur is triple-distilled in copper stills to enhance its flavors and quality.  This process gives the spirit its more common name, Triple Sec.  Today Combier Liqueur d’Orange is distilled in the same copper stills first used by the Combier family.

Here’s something else you may find surprising: the original Triple Sec hasn’t been available in the United states until fairly recently.

You can now find this sip of history at bars and liquor stores.  A 750ml bottle of Combier Liqueur d’Orange is $40.

Try Combier Liqueur d’Orange in a Margarita or Cosmo.  For the Margarita, combine 1 ounce of Combier Liqueur d’Orange, ¾ ounce lime juice and 1½ ounces tequila.  Shake with ice and strain over rocks.  Garnish with lime.  For the Cosmo, combine ½ ounce Combier, 1½ ounces Absolut Citron, ¼ ounce lime juice and 1 ounce cranberry juice.  Shake with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.  Garnish with an orange peel.

Even if you prefer to stick with a newer and less expensive brand, knowing a little about the origins of Triple Sec will give you a new appreciation for this common cocktail ingredient.

For more information on Combier Liqueur d’Orange visit combierusa.com.