Cognac, 2022 - When Jean Martell founded Maison Martell in 1715, aged just 21, he could never have imagined that his cognacs would one day be loved by so many, from royals to pop stars and some of the most internationally acclaimed artists of their time.
COGNACS WITH A SENSE OF HISTORY
During his lifetime, Jean Martell built a legacy of savoir-faire and transmitted an audacious vision that has led to the creation of some of the finest cognacs in the world. Throughout history, Martell cognacs have borne witness to many notable events: Martell was served at the coronation of King George V and at the lavish wedding banquet of Hollywood star Grace Kelly and Prince Rainer of Monaco. Queen Elizabeth II was served Martell cognacs twice in one day during two state banquets in France on April 10th, 1957; at a lunch in the historic Chateau de La Celle Saint-Cloud, and then at a dinner in the iconic Louvre Museum. Following the visit, the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs wrote to the house of Martell to thank the Maison for its involvement and gave a special mention to the Martell cognacs that had been served. In 1977 Martell released an official Silver Jubilee edition in honour of Queen Elizabeth II.
More recently, in 2012, to celebrate Martell Cordon Bleu’s 100th anniversary, the Maison invited one of the oldest and most esteemed Parisian jewellery houses, Boucheron, to create a one-off crystal bottle complete with a white gold lid topped with lapis-lazuli stone. The Martell Cordon Bleu Centenary Boucheron edition embodied both houses’ passion for transforming the finest and rarest of raw materials into either exquisite blends or timeless jewellery.
A WELL-TRAVELLED COGNAC
The prestige of Martell cognacs did not stop on land. Following in the footsteps of Jean Martell - an innovator and world traveller who started exporting his cognacs to Hamburg, Liverpool and London as early as 1720 - Martell cognacs became a staple of prestigious cruises and were served on iconic vessels such as the RMS Mauretania, where those on board would dress in black tie for dinner to enjoy the finest food prepared by the leading chefs of the time. They were served on the maiden voyage of the RMS Queen Mary in 1936 – with reports of more than 250,000 people who crammed onto the docks to wave her off. More recently, Martell’s prestige took to the skies when Martell Cordon Bleu became the cognac of choice on board Concorde, the perfect accompaniment to the lobster and pheasant dishes served to its passengers.
A NEW GENERATION OF AMBASSADORS AND FRIENDS OF THE HOUSE
To this day, Martell cognac is enjoyed by disruptors and creatives who embrace the spirit of the house to challenge conventions, whether they come from the world of cinema, music, art or gastronomy. When Maison Martell celebrated its tricentenary, the spectacular party at the palace of Versailles was attended by a host of A-list guests including Diane Kruger, Solange Knowles, Olivia Palermo and Bond Girl Naomie Harris. Since then, the Maison has partnered with the likes of Grammy-nominated singer and actress Janelle Monáe, film star Vincent Cassel and Nigerian superstar rapper Davido, who, of a recent collaboration said, “Martell and I go back a long way. I’m part of the Martell family.” The latest collaborations with creative talents include one of Asia's most successful and internationally recognized actors Tony Leung, and artists such as Chinese fashion designer Angel Chen, Jacky Tsai and Christoph Niemann as well as culinary pioneers such as zero-waste chef Max La Manna and Ghetto Gastro, the New York based collective of chefs and food enthusiasts with deep ties to the Bronx.
Keeping up with the times, Maison Martell continues to create unique experiences and events across the globe and to this day, is being served alongside the best menus in the world.
In 2021, the House hosted a winter terrace at the Mandarin Oriental Paris and Adam Wong presented an exclusive cognac-pairing menu at Hong Kong’s famous Forum Restaurant. Most recently, Maison Martell launched The Legacy Dinner Series, a series of multi-sensorial cognac pairing gastronomic escapades held in Chinese and Modern European restaurants across Malaysia.
Speaking about the fabulous legacy of being at the heart of some important celebrations in history and the cognac of choice for some of the most creative talents of today, Christophe Valtaud, Martell Cellar Master said, “Maison Martell has been producing some of the most incredible liquids the world has ever seen for over three centuries. It is not a surprise then, that it is often selected as the drink of choice to toast iconic moments in time. The heart of what we strive for as a house, is to produce exceptional cognacs that bring people together, and allow them to enjoy themselves, for no reason, or for the most special of reasons. We hope that people all over the world will continue to involve Martell in the joyous occasions in their lives and that this legacy of celebration will live on.”
About Maison Martell
The oldest of the great cognac houses, founded by Jean Martell in 1715, Maison Martell is renowned throughout the world for the finesse and elegance of its cognacs, the result of a legacy of savoir-faire handed down through nine generations. Together with a passion for its craft and a profound attachment to the terroir, Maison Martell is defined by the audacity with which it has challenged convention to create new expressions of cognac, including the icon Martell Cordon Bleu in 1912. The free spirit of the House is symbolised by its historic emblem: the swift.