Thursday, September 25, 2014

Up There with The King of Cognac: Louis XIII de Remy Martin

Chanel, Picasso, Churchill, and de Gaulle, icons of history drawn together with a common love, and passion, for the best cognac in the world. Louis XIII de Remy Martin, the King of Cognac.  

A hundred years of aging and blending, a slow, unhurried, and meticulous process goes into each batch of Louis XIII de Remy Martin before being filled in the iconic Baccarat crystal decanter. And with each sip, it becomes increasingly clear why Chanel, Picasso, Churchill, and de Gaulle had this fascination, and passion, for the King of Cognac. And for one special evening, I get that one chance to experience the magnificent blend...

The venue for the royal reception of the King of Cognac is equally impressive, set at Chef Jessie's 100 Revolving Restaurant towering high above Eastwood. And yes, the restaurant revolves, at a slow and gradual pace that's almost unnoticeable, until the view shifts featuring another perspective of the city.

Thirty-three floors above the metro, Chef Jessie's 100 Revolving Restaurant offers panoramic views. Completing one full revolution in roughly an hour, you get different views of the city, including the distant Makati skyline. It is the perfect venue for the King of Cognac. 

With Louis XIII de Remy Martin, each Baccarat crystal decanter is a result of the long tradition of craftsmanship and artistry since it was founded back in 1724. And it all begins with the terroir, that convergence of soil, climate, and vines that combine for a perfect blend. For Louis XIII de Remy Martin, the terroir is focused on the celebrated Grande Champagne region, with its chalk-rich soil and specific microclimate. Once the grapes are harvested, it is then distilled twice over to produce eaux-de-vie in small copper stills. Each Louis XIII de Remy Martin is a delicate and intricate blend of 1,200 of the finest eaux-de-vie from the Grande Champagne region, each with its own unique notes and nuances. Remy Martin's Cellar Master then takes over, caring for the precious eaux-de-vie in century-old "tiercon" barrels of Limousin oak at the limestone-walled cellars of Le Grollet. It takes three generations of cellar masters to produce a single bottle of Louis XIII, which is why many connoisseurs describe each decanter as "a century in a bottle."

The elegant case protecting the crystal decanter is made of fine leather that easily slides open to reveal the product, and also easily snaps shut to keep your precious bottle of Louis XIII de Remy Martin safe. The soft and smooth deep red leather is accentuated by the detailed stitching and polished metal clasps adding that distinct premium look. The Louis XIII de Remy Martin deserves nothing less. It is, after all, the undisputed King of Cognac. When opened, a glass-lined compartment drapes the elegant decanter in light, highlighting Louis XIII's deep amber hues. 
The iconic decanter is said to be inspired from an artifact recovered on the site of the Battle of Jarnac by Emile Remy Martin, with its distinct and elaborate fleur de lys, a symbol of the historic French monarchy. Since then, the classic baroque design has been synonymous with the world's best cognac. The bottle has been produced by Baccarat since 1936, with its distinct gold collar and signature fleur de lys crystal stopper. The decanter alone sets it apart from the rest, and one sip completely erases all doubts. Totally. 

The evening began with a refreshing Remy Martin Cocktail, blended with cucumber syrup and apple juice, a light and easy drink that gets you in the groove in no time. Go for a second. And a third. Mildly sweet, with the deep flavors of the premium cognac coming through, lingering long after the last sip. This one goes to my list of favorite cocktails.

Chef Jessie and her team then fire up the kitchen to begin the exclusive tasting menu paired with Remy Martin. The King of Cognac, after all, deserves nothing but the best.

A mesclun of Choice Greens with Special Laurin Sauce is served as the first course, with clean and fresh flavors enhanced by the mild Laurin sauce. The Remy Martin Cocktail perfectly compliments the delicate flavors of the first course. 

Barbecued Baby Octopus Salad with Mango & Orange, a delicately grilled octopus with a sweet glaze, sprinkled with sesame seeds, combine with the sweet and tart notes of the mango and orange for another complex blend of rich flavors. 

Grilled Beef Heart with Salsa Verde, tender chunks of beef hearts with a unique flavor and texture, enriched by the blend of finely chopped herbs. The flavors, though delicate, are more pronounced, with each succeeding course taking flavors a notch higher in intensity. The beefy flavors are perfectly finished by the sweet and refreshing Remy Martin Cocktail.  

A comforting Clear Essence of Wild Game with Herbed Dumplings, a light yet flavorful broth, is served next. Rustic and hearty flavors in every sip, with just a hint of the gamey notes. 

Next, Chef Jessie's Steamed Organic Barramundi Fillet in Chardonnay-Grapes Jus, is served. The tender fish, with its buttery texture, almost melts in your mouth, punctuated by the rich sauce. 

In between, Chef Jessie's Celery-Tarragon-Mint Sorbet was served as a palate cleanser, refreshingly tart and minty. And you're good for more rounds of Remy Martin Cocktails.

Chef Jessie then served the main course, a flavorful duo of Medallions of Black Angus Beef & Lamb Au Jus with Edamame Mash, both tender and flavorful, with juicy pink centers. The edamame mash adds a rich nutty note, completing the flavors. The range of flavors presented by Chef Jessie Sincioco is impressive, and it gets better...

Christophe Bourrie, Regional Director of Remy Cointreau's Prestige Business Division (L) and Chef Jessie Sincioco (R), lead guests in a toast with the Louis XIII de Remy Martin.  Each guest is served a special crystal glass, as the precious cognac is gently poured, the culmination of the dedication, artistry, and passion of three generations of cellar masters.

An intricate crystal glass exclusively created by noted French designer Cristophe Pillet holds the precious cognac, as the deep golden hues glow in the crystal. A gentle whiff exudes the distinct woody notes from the century-old oak casks, and a subtle sip unleashes a bold burst of fruity and spicy hints that immediately warms your very core. Intense, yet elegantly smooth, this is the ultimate expression of the cellar master's art. This is the unmistakable Louis XIII experience, in just one sip.

Chef Jessie caps the elegant dinner with an indulgent Dark Chocolate Mousse with Marc de Bourgogne Prunes, with the deep chocolate flavors perfectly complemented by elegant Louis XIII de Remy Martin. Chocolates, a cigar, or simply as is, the Louis XIII de Remy Martin is in a class of its own.

As the holiday season approaches, there's nothing quite like the Louis XIII de Remy Martin as the ultimate corporate gift to valued clients, or an indulgent reward to yourself. For true cognac connoisseurs, the King of Cognac is an elegant addition to any collection. And if you do own a vintage bottle of Louis XIII de Remy Martin in your collection, hold on to it. Remy Cointreau is on the search for the oldest sealed bottle of Louis XIII de Remy Martin in the Philippines. So check your grandfather's cellars, you'll never know...

For more information, inquiries and orders on Louis XII de Remy Martin Grande Champagne Cognac, you can contact Future Trade International at 556-8724.

Chef Jessie's 100 Revolving Restaurant is located at the 33rd Floor, MDC 100 Building, C5 corner Eastwood Drive, Quezon City or call 962-1016 for inquiries and reservations.

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