100 years of a successful product is certainly something to be proud of, and for Martell Cognac a century of Cordon Bleu deserves to be marked with something pretty special. And for all of you who now think: hey! what the hell are Max & Sophie talking about? We just think the Cordon Bleu is a very solid product: Both taste and marketing.

The ‘eternal discovery,’ as Martell call it, is being benchmarked in this special year by a limited edition version.  The bottle is, naturally, a take on the classic design that’s remained pretty much unchanged over the decades – with its understated elegance shining through exactly as to be expected.

Cordon Bleu universe

Back in 1912, Edouard Martell made a brave decision to break away from tradition and give his cognac a name that was more than just the House name and quality.  After deciding on the colour blue for his cognac brand, he chose the name Cordon Bleu for this particular blend.  The centenary bottle pays homage to this colour choice, with the whole bottle decked in blue.  As an added twist, the bottle comes with a montre – a miniature bottle that’s usually kept specifically for the cellar master’s tasting sessions.  The montre contains a unique blend of cognac from the Borderies growing region, and blended especially for this purpose by Martell’s Master Blender, Benoît Fil.

Launch in Monte Carlo

Of course, the birth of Martell Cordon Bleu didn’t begin in 1912, for it was two years in the making.  During this time Edouard Martell and his Cellar Master, Auguste Chapeau, tested and selected a blend of over 100 different eaux-de-vies to eventually come up with their masterpiece.  And where better to officially launch their creation than the Hôtel de Paris in Monte Carlo

An instant success, soon Cordon Bleu was to be found around the globe and, indeed travelling around the world as well.  Because of its popularity, cognac lovers wanted to be able to enjoy their tipple on the way to their destinations as well, so the eaux-de-vie was to be found aboard such luxury transport as The Orient Express and on the maiden voyage of the ship Queen Mary in 1936.  Almost four decades later, in 1975, Martell Cordon Bleu broke the sound barrier when it was served on board Concorde.

Other notable events where Cordon Bleu has been the drink of choice include the visit of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to France in 1957, and more recently at the 2010 Vinexpo Exhibition held in Shanghai.

The taste and aroma of Martell Cordon Bleu is marked by the use of grapes produced from the Borderies growing region of Cognac.  Fruit grown in this, the smallest of all the Cognac growing areas, has a particularly fine and rounded taste.  When you settle back for one of those precious cognac tasting moments, you can enjoy Cordon Bleu safe in the knowledge that the eaux-de-vie you drink today remains faithful to the traditional recipe of its creators all those years ago.

Quite well done: Sources: martell.com

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1912-2012: Martell Cordon Bleu Centenary

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Jacki has been with Cognac Expert from virtually the beginning. She's the senior editor of the blog, and has spent much of her life living in rural France. Today she's based back in the UK, where she splits her working life between writing for Cognac Expert and working as a Paramedic at a large regional hospital.

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