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15 December 2014

la maison | rémy martin pop-up

we all know i am a simple girl, with simple tastes, so when ben somehow scored a +1 invite to the la maison rémy martin members club that popped up in soho recently and thought i'd be the best person to go with, i was... shocked. but, because cocktails and a gracious person, of course i went along.

we walked up a down greek street a couple of times, looking for the number of the house the club was supposed to be in, but knowing it was members only, we figured it wasn't going to be easy to find. it wasn't, but the burly bouncer outside a random door should have been the giveaway. yet.. it wasn't. there were no secret handshakes or code words, sadly, which is how i had imagined all the soho members only clubs operated...

inside, we were met by three very lovely ladies - the concierge, and two hosts. they took our coats, and explained how the evening would work: we had a table booked from 8-10pm, plus we were booked into a 'masterclass of opulence' at 8:15pm. we were then to the first-floor bar for a drink, because we were a little early (no thanks to el pink chihuahua!). cognac cocktails? oh, go on then! we started at the top, and worked our way down the list until it was time for us to head into the masterclass on the next floor.

there, in the cognatéque (cognac library), we met a representative of rémy martin, who spoke with such passion and knowledge about the history and pride of the family-run business, and why the brand had decided to join forces with a members club in the heart of london. we were taught how to appreciate the brandy, to taste it, and what ingredients are used to create the incredibly luxurious anhd long-lasting flavours you can taste for hours after, on the tongue and back of the throat.

i will admit... i'm not a brandy girl, at all, and found the taste raaaather strong and overpowering. i did not know that brandy is essentially what happens when you continue to ferment grapes past the stage it becomes wine, so based on that information alone, i feel like i should give brandy another chance!

in the centre of the room was a giant spread of ingredients and flavours that are used in the fermenting process, and as we were there on the last night of the event, we were encouraged to eat it all (we did not. i did have a few macarons, won't lie). it was interesting to try different types of food after each sip and discover new palette cleansers (parmesan cheese, raw tuna, who knew!) that completely wiped the taste and heat of the brandy from your mouth. incredible!

i did feel a bit out of my depth, being in such a refined and classy establishment after i'd had maybe a few too many tequilas, but it was definitely worth heading along to - even if just because i know i will never get an invite to a place like that myself. me, a member? of a club? please! unless it's a 'terrible taste in music' or 'eating chocolate in bed almost nightly' club, i don't think they'll want me on the guest list.

are you a brandy fan? what are your fun brandy palette cleanser facts?
(if any?)

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