Grand Marnier debuts £2,000 liqueur

by Kate Malczewski

Campari-owned liqueur brand Grand Marnier has unveiled its Exceptional Range, featuring two limited edition Cognac-based expressions.

Master blender Patrick Raguenaud oversaw the creation of the new collection. The first bottling, Grand Marnier Quintessence, was inspired by an old recipe in the Grand Marnier archives, and marries the essence of bitter orange with rare hors d’âge Cognacs selected from the personal reserves of the Marnier Lapostolle family cellar. The double-distilled liquid features notes of dried fruit, apricot and walnut against a backdrop of warm vanilla. “It’s a rare experience to drink this, even to imagine this kind of Cognac is rare. The sensation, the feeling, the perception of what you smell, it is unforgettable,” Raguenaud commented. “When you blend for Quintessence, you blend a heritage.” The limited edition Cognac comes in a decanter with a handmade stopper created by crystal manufacturer Baccarat. The second bottling in the collection, Révélation, features just 'a dash' of bitter orange essence, producing a more 'Cognac-forward' taste. It is made with XXO Cognacs from Grande Champagne that have been aged at the Grand Marnier château in Bourg-Charente, and the final blend is left to rest in oak for several months. The resulting liqueur offers a subtle expression, with the floral, vanilla and almond notes of the Cognac coming through. The Exceptional Range is available in select markets. In the UK, Quintessence is limited to 12 bottles retailing for £2,200 (US$2,980) each, and Révélation is limited to 23 bottles priced at £650 (US$882) each.