This is a diary entry from a press trip to Cognac where I got to meet cellar master for Remy Martin Baptiste Loiseau.
It’s not intended to be educational, but the pictures will give you an idea of the environment in which the Carte Blanche limited edition is made.
Colonel Smithers: Have a little more of this rather disappointing brandy. M: What’s the matter with it? James Bond: I’d say it was a 30-year-old fine, indifferently blended, sir… with an overdose of bon-obis. – Goldfinger.
After a tour of the vineyards we stopped off at Remy Martin Domaine De St Preuil for some cocktails.
I ate oysters, declined fois gois for the first time and spoke about the Brandy scene in Goldfinger to anyone that would listen.
After a few more drinks I had broken the seal. Much like when the Holy Grail passes the Great Seal, my bladder crumbles like the temple in Indiana Jones.
With no toilet on the bus I closed my eyes and concentrated on my breathing.
Amazingly my bladder managed to hold it together for the ten minute trip to the fish farm, the walk through the campestral seclusion of Gensac-La-Pallue and through to the cellar for the theatrical reveal of Rémy Martin Carte Blanche à Baptiste Loiseau.
During the tasting, Baptiste Loiseau asked the room what they thought. What experience they were getting from Carte Blanche and what notes they were getting.
One twat said Vanilla, and it wasn’t me.
Back at the lodge, the guys all gathered in the market square for beers and cigars and discussed which one of the group we fancied the most.
I’m sorry ladies, but as Oscar Wilde said, ‘There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.’
There was a clear favourite amongst the group, but the spoils were shared for 2nd and 3rd. Meanwhile an elderly woman had passed out in the background.
I wanted to go over and deliver my Tom Cruise line from Cocktail when he rescues Jordan’s friend on the beach, ‘Champagne. Perfume going in, sewage coming out.’
But the woman wasn’t moving and had possibly died. We decided to abort the drinks as the ambulance came and went back to the hotel to freshen up.
NEXT episode: Up Up and away in my beautiful balloon.