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Grauer Journal

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Grand Marnier "Quintessence"

A result of a family tradition.

Grand Marnier is above all a story of a marriage between fine cognacs and an orange bitter. The term "marriage" is intentional and completely appropriate. This liqueur was born in 1876 as a result of the union of Julia Lapostolle, a granddaughter of a home distiller, and Louis-Alexandre Marnier, a connoisseur of cognacs from a wine-growing family in Sancerre region. Jean Baptiste Lapostolle, Julia's father, founded a distillery producing fruit liqueurs, which would later become Grand Marnier's first distillery.

In 1880, four years after their wedding, Louis-Alexandre Marnier had a ground-breaking idea of combining cognac with a rare variety of Caribbean oranges, the "Citrus Bigaradia": the Marnier Lapostolle House was born! At the time oranges were an exotic luxury product, consumed mainly on special occasions.

Grand Marnier was originally called Curaçao Marnier, but when the inventor invited his friend Cesar Ritz to taste his creation, the latter was so seduced that he suggested renaming it Grand Marnier: "Grand Marnier, a grand name for a grand liquor!"(César Ritz)

Louis-Alexandre immediately trademarked the iconic bottle, inspired by a silhouette of a traditional cognac still. He then dressed the bottle with a red ribbon and a wax seal. These elements have become the signature of the Cordon Rouge edition and are still used today.

When the Grand Marnier came on stage in 1880, it quickly gained popularity in Parisian cafés and brasseries and immediately became a successful product, a synonym of a regained joie de vivre. Louis-Alexandre has not only created Grand Marnier, he has made of it an essence of Parisian lifestyle.

Today, the heritage of Grand Marnier lies in the hands of Patrick Raguenaud, Master Blender of the House. Born and raised in the Cognac region, he embodies the know-how and traditions that have accompanied the brand since the beginning of its history. Since 2004 Patrick Raguenaud has been a conductor of Château de Bourg-Charente, the heart of Grand Marnier, supervising purchases, aging and blending cognacs and producing an orange bitter.

The first cuvee "Quintessence" was born in 2011. Since then it has been produced every year in very limited quantities. It embodies an ultimate expression of the house Marnier Lapostolle.

Winner of the 2016 World Spirits Competition in San Francisco and judged "Extraordinary" in 2017 at the Ultimate Spirits Challenge, Quintessence is the result of an extraordinary blend of vintage cognacs, exceptionally old, exclusively from Grande Champagne and from family old reserves stored in French oak casks. This combination is then assembled with a famous Bigaradier essence, having undergone a double distillation. It is then aged for twelve months in small casks so that it harmonises and acquires its sumptuous copper colour: the outcome is exceptional!

When tasting, Quintessence opens with fresh, lively and delicious aromas. The palate entry is refined, orange notes are followed by fruity and floral flavours. Touches of almond and vanilla bring closure. This spirit evolves in the mouth with a lot of freshness and delicacy.

Each bottle is numbered and takes the form of the original one from 1880. Today there are only fifteen bottles available for sale in Switzerland!

GRAND MARNIER Quintessence - Bottle of 70 cl - Public price: CHF 740.-

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