I was invited to attend and cover the Martell France 300 celebration dinner at Club Gascon, which can be found on my next blog post. However, I thought I would provide a little background information to help you understand the purpose of the event.
The Martell Cognac House was founded in 1715 at the height of the French Art de Vivre movement, which was a period of time when gastronomy and craftsmanship were enjoyed with style. Louis XIV cemented the movement when he gathered the nations most talented artists, craftsmen and culinary figures at the court of Versailles.
Three hundred years later Martell has embarked on a project to identify the modern equivalent as part of their three hundred year anniversary celebrations. They have sought out three hundred influential figures that epitomise Art de Vivre in the 21st Century hence the name Martell 300.
Michelin starred chef Pascal Aussignac was chosen and he celebrated with a Martell inspired menu at his restaurant Club Gascon. Mixologist Clotilde Lataille, another nominee was invited to serve Martell cocktails and illustrator Malika Favre used her designs throughout the experience.
Clotilde was born in France and has lived in London for nearly five years. She has worked in a number of prestigious bars in London and in Paris as well as winning several awards for her work in mixology. She can currently be found behind the bar at Hawksmoor, Spitalfields. She has been identified on the Martell France 300 list hence creating Martell based cocktails for the celebration evening.
Pascal Aussignac was born in Toulouse and trained with several respected chefs in France before moving to the UK bringing southwest French cuisine to London. He opened Club Gascon in 1998 with a focus on informal, traditional and regional food. His restaurant was awarded a Michelin star in 2002. Pascal was nominated for the France 300 list and to celebrate designed a menu inspired by the Charente region of France and incorporating Martell Cognac into the cooking.
Finally Malika Favre, a French artist based in London used her nomination to create several designs shown throughout the evening. Her creations included the invitations and the menu's as well as prints each guest could take home at the end of the meal.
Now you have the background, please read my next post to learn all about this fantastic evening.