For its inaugural first Bartender Talent Academy, Rémy Martin scoured the globe to find eleven of the most passionate up and coming bartenders. These talented individuals were identified by the brand and their local bar communities as ones-to-watch in the industry with their skill and dedication. In addition to being gifted in the craft of mixology, each of these hand-selected bartenders also showcase an exceptional passion with a unique “slash” personality in an arena outside of the industry.
The eleven global finalists created an original Rémy Martin cocktail to embody their “slash” persona and traveled from around the world to Cognac, France to compete in a once-in-a-lifetime cocktail competition. Lauranie Nonotte, Head of International Ambassadors at Rémy Martin, shared, “With the Bartender Talent Academy, we wanted to reconnect with the bartenders community in a very unique way. We selected the rising stars of the mixology industry and created with them a strong, human and true relationship that I’m sure will last long and even be stronger in the years to come, as they will become the most influential talents of their community.”
The Bartender Talent Academy (BTA) is very much in line with Rémy Martin’s heritage as the brand has pushed the boundaries to bring out the most exceptional talents of nature and people to unleash them in their products for nearly 300 years. Rémy Martin has been a family business for three centuries, run by two families who share the same values: the
Rémy Martin and the Heriard Dubreuil families. Above all, Rémy Martin is a company where savoir-faire, family land, experience and formulas have been passed down from one generation to the next. It is a company driven by an entrepreneurial spirit, solidarity and long-term vision, both within the company and in relations with external partners. To be part of Rémy Martin is to be part of a family. Throughout the BTA experience, the competitors and all involved certainly became a family worthy of the brand’s legacy. Also of note, the House of Rémy Martin’s motto is “One Life / Live Them” and the first BTA is very much in line with that philosophy; the competition will return in mid-June 2018.
Before the competition began, the group experienced a full immersion in the world of Rémy Martin to learn about the quality and passion of the brand. They toured the vineyards to see the vines and learn about how much work and care goes into the grapes. Then they toured the distillery in Touzac, to learn how the master distiller crafts the eau-de-vie. The also visited the cellars for a tasting of Rémy Martin VSOP, 1738 and XO alongside the “Opulence Revealed” experience with a wide assortment of culinary delights to explore food pairings with cognac. During each step along the way, the group of bartenders from around the world bonded sharing their cultures and bonding over their shared passions for the industry and cognac.
Next, after all of the group learning and sharing, it was competition time. Each of the global competitors presented their cocktail in three separate disciplines: Storytelling, Presentation, Technique. Ultimately, the judging panel crowned Younjung Oh of Aloft Seoul Myeongdong in Seoul South Korea as the ultimate winner. Her “On Stage” cocktail showcased her “slash” talent as a magician alongside her impressive bartending skills. Second Prize went to David Nyamekye of Front Bar in Accra Ghana and Third Prize was awarded to Dimitar Vasilev of Mama Kelly & EBS in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The awards were presented at a glamorous 1920’s speakeasy-style gala with Rémy Martin cocktails crafted by Mixologists Cédric Bouteiller and Germain Canto with a special culinary pairing menu prepared by Philippe Saint Romas, Head Chef, Maître Cuisinier de France.
The Rémy Martin experience did not end in Cognac as the group then traveled to Paris to continue the education and festivities. Each person was paired with expert motorcycle drive for an unforgettable Sidecar Tour of Paris. The first stop was at the legendary Hemingway Bar in the Ritz Hotel where they learned about the bar’s history in a private reception by the iconic, Colin Field. As a very special treat, Rémy Martin VSOP Sidecars were crafted and served by Colin Field and Roman Devaux. Next up, they traveled on their sidecar motorcycles for more Sidecars and Old Fashioneds at the barbershop speakeasy, Gentleman 1919. The last stop was a final celebratory dinner at Le Roch Hotel where they were presented with an XO Experience food pairing with Rémy Martin XO.
The Bartender Talent Academy was a truly exceptional experience with a truly exceptional brand.
Full List of The Bartender Talent Academy Global Competitors 2018
- Barna Jeremias, Little Black Door, Dubai United Emirates
- David Nyamekye, Front Back, Accra Ghana
- Konstantin Plesovskikh, Chaiyay Tea & Cocktails, Moscow
- Ekatarina Emifova, Keanu, Moscow Russia
- Stanislaw Borowicz, Puro Hotel Gdansk Poland
- Younjung Oh, Aloft Seoul Myeongdong, Seoul South Korea
- Terry Huang, The Coo of Ten Caf, Guangzhou China
- Yi Li, If lounge, Chongking China
- Ian Alexander, Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog, NYC United States
- Pierrick Baudry, Maison Souquet, France
- Dimitar Vasilev, Mama Kelly EBS Amsterdam, Netherlands
On Stage – by Grand Prize Winner, Younjung Oh
Rémy Martin VSOP
- Butterfly Tea Infusion
- Fresh Lemon
- Cucumber Syrup
- Yuzu Marmalade
- Soda Water
For more information about Rémy Martin, visit https://www.remymartin.com/us/
ABOUT REMY MARTIN
Founded in 1724, Maison Rémy Martin is the embodiment of Cognac Fine Champagne. The fruit of the prestigious regions of Grande and Petite Champagne, its cognacs hold outstanding aging potential. The exclusive selection of grapes that make up the heart and soul of cognac, combined with the inimitable know-how of the cellar masters, create a one-of-a-kind aromatic intensity. For over three hundred years, the House has pursued one ambition: to reveal the talents of nature and humankind through its quest to capture the very heart of Cognac.