Rémy Martin, a French spirits house best known for its winegrowing heritage and cognac expertise, has awarded John Ardy Silva and Duane Legaspi from Ruby Wong’s Godown as its first-ever bartender duo champion in the recent Philippine Barrel-Aged Cocktail Competition Finals held at The Ministry at Shangri-La, The Fort.
Filipino bartenders John Ardy Silva and Duane Legaspi showcased Remy Martin’s 1738 Accord Royal through their unique blend called “Avant-Garde”. Classic meets modern, this perfectly balanced aged drink was a result of the relationship between the barrel, Remy Martin’s 1738 Accord Royal, vermouth, and umeshu, with an added punch of olive cordial.
The winning duo will receive the honor and privilege of being sent to one of Asia’s Best Bar to do a guest residency shift, where they will be mixing up their signature cocktails for guests in that market.
Baccarat Room Bar at Solaire Resorts and Casino represented by Melody Joy Lim and Mark Clarenz Tagbago and The Curator represented by Mandrake Ferrer and Karl Kristof Victor won first and second place, respectively. Other finalists include pairs representing local bars including OTO, Run Rabbit Run, La Veranda Spiral, Alibi Lounge, Finestra Italian Steakhouse, Salt and Ice, The Spirits Library, Lotus Gin Room, and Guilt PH. The finalists were selected based on their ability to infuse the latest 1738 Accord Royal into a cocktail that celebrates the creativity of Filipino bartenders.
The challenge for the Barrel-Aged Cocktail Competition finalists was to age the 1738 Accord Royal in a barrel and conceptualize a cocktail highlighting the distinct fruity flavor and oaky smoothness of the 1738 Accord Royal. They were asked to showcase their creativity with the goal of further promoting Rémy Martin’s efforts to ‘Team Up for Excellence.’
The cocktails were judged by a selected panel – Arkadiusz Rybak, a multi-awarded, Bar and Beverage Consultant and Founder of Good Vibes Only consultancy; Cyrene De La Rosa, independent food & drink journalist, and content creator and good food and drinks advocate; and Edgardo Guzman, Country Chief Representative at Rémy Cointreau Philippines with eight years of Premium Wines & Spirits experience.
Remy Martin ambassador Kathrin Osmillo also shared, “Each of the 12 finalists deserved their spot at the top and their expertise is unquestionable. In the end what we looked at primarily was the creativity and balance of the cocktail and how they highlighted or maximized the use of the key element, which is the barrel-aged cognac, and the harmony of the drink and music chosen for the presentation. Those factors had a big impact on determining the final winner.”
Since its founding in 1724, Rémy Martin has championed innovation through a legacy that is rooted in its history whilst constantly evolving with the taste of today’s connoisseurs. This is reflected particularly in the Barrel-Ageing competitions the brand has been hosting across Asia, starting with China in 2020 and most recently, Singapore in 2022.
Barrel ageing involves using wood and time to change the flavor of the barrel contents through maturation. Alongside the types of casks and duration of ageing, the size of the barrel affects the taste profile of the end product as well. Rémy, in particular, only uses oak from the French region of Limousin. This oak is more porous and offers a pronounced flavor profile that is heavy on the vanilla. No two barrels will produce the same cocktail, and this unique outcome adds to the excitement of this competition.
“As a brand that champions innovation, we are pleased to offer a platform for the participants to showcase both their mixology skills and creativity with the 1738 Accord Royal,” said Myke Soon, Country Brand Lead at Rémy Cointreau International.
The award-winning 1738 Accord Royal demonstrates an oaky smoothness as a result of the toasting of the casks before the eaux-de-vie begins to mature. The idea of being born from the cask illustrates the deep history of the unique cognac blend, even honoring the Accord Royal granted by King Louis XV to Rémy Martin in 1738 through its name. Full of floral, fruity, spicy, and toasted flavors, it lends itself to a whole host of cocktails and food pairings.
“All participants have created exceptional cocktails with 1738 Accord Royal, and choosing the champion was a tough decision to make. We congratulate the duo from Ruby Wong’s Godown for creating an outstanding cocktail and we look forward to recognizing more of our creative local mixologists in the future,” said Rémy Cointreau Philippines Chief Representative Ed Guzman.
All these incredible mixes will be available for all to experience in the respective locations of participating bars.
To learn more about Rémy Martin and its products, visit www.remymartin.com. You may also follow fb.com/RemyMartinPhilippines on Facebook and @remymartin on Instagram for updates and upcoming events. You may also check out Rémy Martin at boozy.ph, singlemalt.ph, flasked.ph, boozeshop.ph, and clink.ph.