The Beautiful Cocktail

The Beautiful Cocktail

The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 3 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 3 mins
Serving: 1 serving
Yield: 1 cocktail
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
139 Calories
2g Fat
20g Carbs
14g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 139
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 16mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 20g 7%
Dietary Fiber 8g 29%
Protein 14g
Calcium 11mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

The beautiful cocktail is a simply wonderful way to enjoy a very nice cognac. It goes along with the theory of the B&B—to enhance brandy with a top-shelf liqueur and create an enjoyable, sophisticated drinking experience. It is in these two drinks that one can see the beauty of simplicity, even the absence of ice allows the drinks to come together in a true, unadulterated way.

Nearly as popular as the B&B, the beautiful is also called a French connection no. 2 or, more simply, cognac and Grand Marnier, a reflection of the two ingredients the drink requires. The orange liqueur laces your favorite cognac with sweet citrus notes, adding a softer dimension to the experience. It's a drink in which you can bring out the nicer cognacs. While some drinkers prefer adding a single ice cube, it's most often served neat.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    The Beautiful Cocktail ingredients, cognac and Grand Marnier

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  2. Build the drink in a brandy snifter by pouring the brandy and Grand Marnier into the glass. Serve and enjoy!

    The Beautiful Cocktail

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck


  • Stirring is not necessary, and you can even get away with swirling the drink in the glass to mix the two ingredients. The snifter's sides are tall so there's little chance of splashing, and swirling it occasionally enhances the aroma and flavor as you drink.
  • If you prefer a chilled drink, place one extra-large ice cube or ice ball into the glass then add the spirits. The large piece of ice melts slowly and will minimize dilution.
  • Skip the ice and chill the snifter in the freezer for about 10 minutes instead.

Recipe Variations

  • This mix is excellent with a slight amount of heat: Pour hot water into the snifter and let it rest for about 5 minutes before discarding the water and pouring the liquors.
  • If you're looking for a substitute for Grand Marnier, be sure the orange liqueur has a brandy base. The best alternative is Gran Gala, which is made with Italian brandy.
  • When you switch from Grand Marnier to amaretto, you're drinking a French connection. The combination of cognac and amaretto is also excellent when topped with hot coffee.

How Strong Is the Beautiful Drink?

Since there is no ice involved, the beautiful cocktail maintains the bottling strength of the two spirits. The average brandy is 80-proof, as is Grand Marnier, so the cocktail weighs in at 40 percent ABV (80 proof). That is strong, but not really the point of a drink like this. Drinkers who enjoy a snifter of fine brandy are not concerned about strength; taste and the aromatics inside the glass are the important elements.