Drew Brees and Pro Chef Team Up with Cointreau to Make Game-Day Cocktails

Kristopher Knox@@kris_knoxFeatured ColumnistJanuary 14, 2022

**FOR USE WITH AP LIFESTYLES** This photo taken April 27, 2009 shows that adding fennel seeds and thyme to  shrimp can make a barbecue shrimp kabob tasty and good for you in this dish seen ready to serve.(AP Photo/Jim Cole)
Photo courtesy of Cointreau

Drew Brees Mixes Up Game Day Margaritas With NOLA Chef Isaac Toups

As football season heads into the playoffs, fans are gearing up for Game Day.

Fans serious about tailgating—or just homegating around the television—know that Game Day calls for two very important things: good food and fine cocktails.

Here, we're teaming up with Cointreau and legendary quarterback Drew Brees to take a look at a little bit of both. Brees and Cointreau should be familiar to football fans everywhere.

One has thrown for more than 80,000 passing yards and is a surefire first-ballot Hall of Famer. The other is the iconic orange liqueur that is the go-to ingredient for mixologists and an essential spirit for any home bar since it's used in hundreds of cocktails, including The Sidecar and The Original Margarita. Cointreau is an orange liqueur that you can mix with essentially any type of spirit to craft a better cocktail.

For more than 170 years—since 1849—Cointreau has been a go-to ingredient for mixologists. It's a full-strength spirit that you can mix with essentially any type of liquor to craft a better cocktail.

In our first episode, we'll check in with Brees and former Top Chef contestant, New Orleans chef Isaac Toups, as they make The Original Margarita, a spicy margarita and a delicious BBQ shrimp recipe perfect for any tailgate or homegate party.

Photo courtesy of Cointreau


The Original Margarita

The Original Margarita was created when Dallas socialite Margarita Sames mixed her two favorite spirits, Cointreau and tequila, together with lime juice while on vacation in Acapulco in 1948. This original recipe has stood the test of time and essentially remains unchanged. 


Ingredients (Serves 8)

1 cup Cointreau

2 cups blanco tequila

1 cup fresh lime juice

1 cup water



To a pitcher, add Cointreau, tequila, lime juice and water. Stir ingredients for at least 15 seconds. Serve over ice in a margarita glass, garnished with a lime wheel. If not serving immediately, place the batch in the refrigerator until it's time to serve.

Photo courtesy of Cointreau


Spicy Margarita

Cointreau is an aromatic and balanced ingredient in classic cocktails ranging from a Sidecar to a Cosmopolitan. Its fresh, citrus orange flavor will elevate any cocktail.

If you're looking for real spice in your drink, though, nothing beats a spicy margarita. Here's a quick and simple single-serving recipe that promises to get your homegate started right.


Ingredients (Serves 1)

1 ounce Cointreau

2 ounces blanco tequila

¾ ounce lime juice

2 slices jalapeno

2 slices fresh cilantro



Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Shake well and serve in a margarita glass over ice. Garnish with a jalapeno slice.


BBQ Shrimp Recipe

This delicious BBQ shrimp recipe from Chef Toups is great for a halftime meal or in-game snacking. It's quick, has a fun and colorful presentation, and is sure to be a hit with guests.

Here's how Chef Toups does it:



2 dozen peeled and deveined jumbo shrimp. Fresh if possible.

2 teaspoons black pepper toasted and fine ground

2 teaspoons fennel seed toasted and ground fine

Assorted colorful bell peppers, hot peppers and onions

1 tablespoon grapeseed oil

Kosher salt

Grilling skewers


Sauce Ingredients

2 tablespoons Cointreau

1 tablespoon grapeseed oil

4 cloves minced garlic

½ cup Worcestershire sauce

½ cup heavy cream

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 teaspoons tabasco

2 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature



  • Cut vegetables into strips the width of the shrimp. Toss shrimp and vegetables with salt, pepper, fennel seed and oil. Assemble skewers by alternating shrimp and vegetables, ensuring skewers match.
  • In a thick-bottomed saucepan, heat oil on medium heat. Add garlic and toast to light brown. Add Cointreau and flambe. When fire dies, add cream, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco. Reduce sauce to double cream consistency. Stir in butter. Keep warm but not over flame.
  • To cook the skewers, heat grill to medium-high. Grill skewers for 30-60 seconds on each side. Once shrimp are fully cooked, baste skewers generously with sauce and immediately serve.


There you have it, food and football fans! These recipes are a great addition to any tailgate or homegate on Game Day. Have fun, drink responsibly, and allow your taste buds to explore the possibilities.

Episode 2: Drew Brees Earns Ingredients to Make NOLA-Inspired Margarita with Chef Isaac Toups

When we last joined legendary quarterback Drew Brees and former Top Chef contestant, New Orleans Chef Isaac Toups, they were exploring The Original Margarita, a spicy margarita and a wonderful BBQ shrimp recipe. Here, they'll dive into another delicious margarita variant while playing some games that will test if Brees still has the arm strength and accuracy that made him a future Hall of Famer.

Check out the video below to see Brees' skills slinging the football and stirring up incredible cocktails, and keep reading for more delicious recipes!

Photo courtesy of Cointreau


Ginger Mint Margarita

While The Original Margarita is usually a hit, Cointreau's bright and balanced flavor—not too sweet—makes crafting creative variations easy.

As Brees and Chef Toups discover, the Ginger Mint margarita is a fantastic addition to any bartender's repertoire.


Ingredients (Serves 1)

1 ounce Cointreau

2 ounces blanco tequila

0.75 ounce fresh lime juice

2 slices fresh ginger

5 mint leaves



Muddle ginger in mint in a shaker. Add all other ingredients and ice. Shake well and strain into a rocks glass. Garnish with a mint leaf and a ginger slice.


These drink recipes are a great addition to any tailgate or homegate party. Many other possibilities are out there waiting to be tried too. Remember to be safe, drink responsibly and have fun!

To discover more Cointreau cocktail recipes, visit www.cointreau.com/cocktails or follow Cointreau on Instagram at @Cointreau_US or on Facebook at @cointreauUS. To order Cointreau for delivery, visit Drizly.