Vincent Géré is 48 years old and lives in Echebrune, in the vineyards at the heart of Petite Champagne with his wife and two children. For the past decade, he has headed up the team at Rémy Martin, where The Cellarmaster, Estates, eau-de-vie purchasing, research and development, heritage and international ambassadors’ departments all report to him.
We got to meet with Vincent Géré to learn more about him, the world of cognacs and of course, Rémy Martin.
LM: Please describe to our readers what your position of Director of Estates & Oenology entails?
VG: I am ultimately responsible for all the cognacs made by the company – their supply, production and style, from the world famous VSOP Fine Champagne to Louis XIII known as ‘the King of Cognacs’. My goal is to try to maintain the reputation Rémy Martin upholds and encapsulate the very heart, or the essence, of cognacs and the quality of the spirit. We do this by sourcing and working with the best vineyards and growth areas and team of wine experts. We hold a strong relationship with everyone involved to embrace the same vision of quality and have to ensure blends will reach maturity and deliver in say, 10 years, or even 50 years’ time, which is a major challenge.
LM: What are the core philosophies of brands in the Rémy Martin portfolio?
VG: Our vision is to offer cognacs with a superior quality to experience, that ‘one of a kind’ appeal – on both taste and overall drinking experience. We draw on our provenance – allowing traditional methods to develop a superior range of flavours within our taste profile. The end result is a high aromatic intensity with our cognacs. We aim for a balanced harmony and a smooth delivery on the palette, with a longer lasting taste impression, or experience, for the drinker. For example, we offer food pairings to enhance our Louis XIII edition and create an extension on the pleasure of discerning cognac drinking.
LM: You recently launched the Louis XIII Rare Cask 42,6 in India. What makes this edition so special and why was this country chosen for the unveiling?
VG: We wanted to choose a destination that fits in well with the astonishing and extraordinary quality of this ‘king of cognacs’, which has been available to enjoy since 1874 and has lasted the test of time. We see Louis XIII as a miracle borne out of true craftsmanship from both the cellar master and the best that mother nature can give you. The location of Udaipur appealed to us for its rich history and ostentatious palaces and was the ideal venue to gather our key opinion leaders from the four corners of the world. Louis XIII is seen by us and by many as royalty and so we felt that it should be treated as such.
LM: How is the cognac market performing in the UK and abroad, and how do you see the future of this during a challenging economic climate?
VG: The superior cognac market in which Rémy Martin sits is positive in the UK and we believe this will remain the same even during a difficult economic time. We host a number of events and employ brand ambassadors to help communicate our key messages to continue to both engage and educate cognac drinkers about Rémy Martin.
LM: Who are your typical customers in terms of age, profession, and geographical reach?
VG: For us, there is not one typical type of consumer. The age and geographical region and lifestyle is hugely diverse. Instead, they share the same ideals; to only live once, to spoil yourself from time to time and to be audacious and ambitious enough to enjoy the finer things in life. Our customers are also eager to understand more about our background, expertise and it’s not just built purely on status.
LM: What is your biggest luxury in life?
VG: I believe that to term something truly luxurious is anything that is proven by time and holds a sense of value to the person who owns it, or experiences it. I am an epicurean and so my most enriching experience is a great table – a freshly prepared meal with good company around you.
LM: How important is the UK market to you?
VG: We place a lot of importance on the UK market because it attracts a high level of visibility for premium drinkers but we equally balance our focuses on other parts of the world and Europe, such as our homeland of France and Germany.
LM: Where can I purchase a glass of the Rare Cask 42,6 in the UK and how much will it cost?
VG: The unique Louis XIII Rare Cask 42,6 is available exclusively by the glass in great establishments such as The Arts Club, Claridges and 45 Park Lane (Dorchester Collection).
LM: Also where can I purchase the Rare Cask 42,6 decanter in the UK?
VG: Louis XIII Rare Cask 42,6 can be purchased at fine wine & spirit boutiques such as Harrods or Hedonism Wines for RRP £19,995 from September 2013.