You’ve got to love the folk at Courvoisier. They always seem to be larging it. Not in a crass way, far from it – they definitely do things in style. Very few companies would contemplate creating a pedal-powered punch machine for festival goers, fewer still would take on the monumental task of flooding a ballroom with their precious spirit, then get punters to row across it in a boat. So when they told us they were planning something bigger and even better for this summer, our interest was piqued to say the least…
We met up with the team in the early stages of planning their ‘step inside the largest cocktail’ shenanigans, and were privvy to their ideas for the not-to-be-missed event coming to London next month.
The brief was to make this most serious of spirits playful, interactive and fun. And trust us, there were no shortage of creative thoughts from the London bar managers appointed to fulfill the task. Amanda Humphrey from 5 Hertford Street, Mickael Perron from Annabel’s and Chris Lacey from Rule’s let their imaginations run wild with their visions of how to recreate the Courvoisier Institute of Grand Cocktails, set up over 100 years ago for the world’s greatest bartenders to perfect the ultimate cocktail.
Some of their concepts were completely out there, others more workable but all were absolutely fascinating. And soon their elaborate storyboards will be brought to life in a limited-run spectacular designed to challenge our perceptions of cognac.
For two days only consumers will be able to fully immerse themselves inside a Courvoisier Punch, Sazerac and champagne cocktail to discover its personality, characteristics and taste. Amanda Humphrey will be bringing the champagne cocktail to life in a decadent but decaying ballroom setting; Chris Lacey will be interpreting and serving his favourite cocktail, the Sazerac in an apothecary/science-styled room, while Mickael Perron will show off the Courvoisier punch in the produce stores of the once derelict institute at The Heritage Rooms in Bloomsbury.
The extravangaza takes place on 13 & 14 July with one hour sessions running every 20 minutes (from 6.30pm-10.30pm on Fri; 5.30pm-10.30pm on Sat). It’s going to be a good ‘un so we recommend booking your tickets pretty damn sharpish.
The Heritage Rooms, Victoria House, Bloomsbury Square, WC1B 4DA. Tickets cost £10, see courvoisier.com.