Food

Bar Fox: Theres a new cognac cocktail bar in town you need to try – La Maison Rémy Martin at Bibendum

Bar FoxThursday 27 Sep 2018 1:00 pm

Side car cocktail at La Maison Remy Martin
The Sidecar cocktail at La Maison Rémy Martin – its a classic and its now Bar Foxs new favourite cocktail. Loving the revival

Frankly still recovering from last Thursdays launch of the La Maison Rémy Martin bar for Claude Bosi at Bibendum – but already know where were going tonight.

French cognac house Rémy Martin has just opened La Maison in a sassy little side room at this South Kensington restaurant.

Its enough to make your night just turning up, to be honest – Bibendum is in Michelin House, a 1960s beaut of a building with imposing stained glass windows and ornate interior (complete with oyster and caviar bar). And fun fact – Terence Conran, who actually owns the building – he promised Michelin when he bought it that he would keep faithful to the honesty and style of the original building – designed the Rémy Martin bar.

The Terence Conran designed Maison Remy Martin
The Terence Conran-designed La Maison Rémy Martin bar at Bibendum, once a pop-up, now a permanent fixture

Once inside though, the real fun begins because Rémy have created 9 cocktails for La Maison while Bibendum head chef Claude Bosi has created a food pairing for each one. Its safe to say we have tried them all, which means we can honestly say you should too.

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La Maison Remy Martin at Claude Bosi is designed by Sir Terence Conran, who owns the beautiful Michelin building that houses Bibendum
La Maison Rémy Martin at Claude Bosi is designed by Sir Terence Conran, who owns the beautiful Michelin building that houses Bibendum

Trust us and start with the Royal Sidecar – Rémy 1738 Accord Royal, Cointreau and lemon juice. Punchy, tart, but not too sour – a perfectly balanced cocktail and dangerously moreish. Stopping at one is impossible.

Next up, a Maison Old Fashioned – light, refreshing twist on a regular Old Fashioned using Rémy Martin XO cognac in place of whiskey, salted honey syrup, fig liqueur and bitters. Served over ice with a fig half to garnish, which makes it incredibly photogenic as well. Both style and substance, a beautiful thing.

For another long mix thats a lighter touch, try the Baptiste – Rémy, lemon, maple syrup, orange bitters and French cider or the Vagabond – Rémy Martin 1738, rose-infused Dolin vermouth, lemon and grenadine.

If like us you prefer flavours to be intense and come with a kick, have the Rémy Martin XO neat, or the 1738 with frozen grapes to chill without diluting.

The Remy Martin cognac Old Fashioned
The Rémy Martin cognac Old Fashioned

Be responsible adults and do have the food pairings by Claude Bosi – not least because they include the likes of crispy ravioli with nduja sausage, fried chicken with crab mayo, Petrossian caviar and Morecombe bay oysters.

The Remy Martin Collins cocktail by Remy for La Maison Remy Martin-1ce5
The Rémy Martin Collins cocktail by for La Maison Rémy Martin

There are more to tick off too: a Rosemary Collins, a cognac and tonic, a Rémy and rum punch… but look, youre only human.

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Start with these and come back next week.

As ever, send us pics of your favourites, send us your recommendations or just send us some love.

THE SIDECAR

Our new favourite cocktail. Yes, its a classic. But so many bars dont list the classics – they list the inventive ones that get people excited, but they can always make the classics – we just need to know what to ask for. And that is very much now the Sidecar.

Jack Charlton, brand ambassador of Rémy Martin (can we have your job pls Jack, thx bye) says: Cocktails that are simple, yet balanced and elegant will always stand the test of time and the sidecar is a subtle little number that doesnt disappoint.

Its a perfect balancing act of wonderful spirits. The aromatic intensity of Rémy Martin cognac, the brightness of freshly squeezed lemon juice and all tied together with the wonderful balance of Cointreau.

Truly iconic, made famous in London and Paris and loved the world over, the Sidecar is having a resurgence at the moment and we hope its here to stay.

Here is his recipe for the Sidecar:

Shake 35ml Rémy Martin 1738 Accord Royal with 30ml Cointreau and 15ml lemon juice with ice, then strain into your best coupe glass.

Simple.

La Maison Rémy Martin Residency at Claude Bosi is at Bibendum, 81 Fulham Road, London SW3 6RD.

Opening times – Monday to Saturday: 4:30pm to 12:00am and Sunday: 12:00pm to 11:00pm

@RémyMartinUK #LaMaisonRémyMartin

GOT YOUR OWN INSIDER TIPS?

The Barbary in Neals Yard, Covent Garden. very buzzy, relaxed atmosphere, friendly and counter dining, which I love – so much more relaxed than sitting opposite each other at a table, plus you really get to perv on the open kitchen in the middle where the action. The dishes are a real mix, but all rooted in the culture of the Barbary Coast – the areas settled by Berbers in the Atlas mountains or Morocco, Tunisia and Libya.

We ordered Moroccan cigars filled with salmon (£7.50) and lamb pitas (arayes, £6.50) while waiting for our table (we were told the wait would be an hour and a half, it was actually just an hour) and slightly regretted it when it was time to sit – we just didnt have enough room left to eat all we wanted.

We took the waiters recommendations for all our orders – and had zero regrets. Ikra (cod roe, £7) and chicken liver pate with a gorgeous hot, light pita.

Fragrant mussels thrown in flames before our eyes. Seared pata negra neck (£19.50, you HAVE to have this one). Braised and deep-fried spiced cauliflower (£7.50. There was not a dish among them we wouldnt have again – and in fact, we are going back with emptier bellies just to have a rerun of the dishes we had the first time. Its the sister restaurant to the famous Palomar – but consider this the cooler, more fun sibling. V good for a date, if you dont mind hanging out for a table. – JA, by email.

Why not give us your own suggestions and reviews, or just say hi.

Hit us up at [email protected] Include pics, details and your twitter/facebook/insta page and well give you a link up.

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