On 5th March 2014, I was invited to attend the Cointreau Noir launch party at the basement of 1885. In our invites, we were told that Alfred Cointreau, the Cointreau heir would be visiting New Zealand for the first time to launch the newest Cointreau liqueur and would be the host of the event.
Cointreau Noir is a harmonious blend of Cointreau’s sweet & bitter orange with the rich, velvet texture of Remy Martin Cognac. The French luxury houses of Cointreau and Remy Martin have come together to create Cointreau Noir – a new orange expression that perfectly balances Cointreau’s sweet & bitter orange with the world’s finest cognac.
To develop this premium liqueur, the Cointreau Master Distiller and Remy Martin master Blender merged their knowledge, craftsmanship, and experience to unveil a richer, deeper expression of Cointreau’s iconic orange liqueur which is a tribute to the 440 combined years of history, artistry and secrets that are shared in every bottle of Cointreau Noir.
To put it simply, Cointreau Noir is golden with luminous and amber highlight; opalescence appears when served on ice. In terms of smell, it is rich and complex, cognac and fresh orange peel with notes of vanilla, honey, dried fruit and a touch of almond. To the palate, it is sweet orange and mellow cognac well-balanced with vanilla and oak notes coupled by a long, tart and bittersweet finish.
Alfred Cointreau, the Cointreau heir is 27 years old and as a heritage manager of the famous triple sec brand founded more than 150 years, his responsibility is to preserve its rich heritage while ensuring the brand remains innovative on a global scale.
Alfred is visiting both Auckland and Christchurch with the launch of Cointreau Noir in to the New Zealand market. Invited guests sampled Cointreau Noir cocktails and learned about Cointreau’s history as well as what ignited Alfred’s passion for the family business. Alfred reminisced and in his words, stated: “I have fond memories of learning to mix cocktails with my grandmother but my first childhood memory regarding Cointreau is the smell. I remember the first time I visited the distillery I was around 4 or 5 years old, no more. The closer I walked to the distillation room, the more I could smell the orange flavors which were the strongest.”
Alfred also spoke about the versatility of Cointreau whereby you can appreciate it neat or on ice but also in cocktails as in fact some of the more iconic cocktails were created with Cointreau such as the Sidecar in England, the Margarita in Acapulco or the Cosmopolitan in San Francisco to name a few example from some of the 350 originals cocktails created with Cointreau.
The cocktails on offer were Cointreau Noir Iced Tea, Cointreau Noir Apple Soda, Espresso Cointreau Noir, Cointreau Noir Escalade Margarita.
The waitresses were wearing Moochi and hair styled, courtesy of Vada Hair. The jewelry pieces they were wearing were pieces from Zoe & Morgan’s new season ’14 collection “Map of an Invisible World”.
Cointreau Noir will be available in New Zealand shelves in April and will be available nationwide in a 700ml bottle at $75 (ABV 40%).
Photography by Sam Lee