What motivated you to set up a business in such a niche sector?
It happened that we ended up in this niche but very prestigious sector because we wanted to create a Cognac that is exceptionally good from every angle you look at it. The Cognac that we would enjoy drinking ourselves. For us, the Cognac as a whole, is such a beautiful story of a life journey that we think many people can relate to, one way or another. It is a story of sun, wind, rain and soil coming together to give birth to exquisite grapes. It is a story of people who spend their lives caring for the vineyards, distilling spirits, building and extraordinary cellar and crafting their art one day at the time for generations. It is a story of struggle, passion, and love to create a spirit that gives joy and pleasure.
After scrupulous search and interviewing several potential partners in Cognac, we met Maison Boinaud family, a prominent Grande Champagne domain established in 1640. Beyond being wonderful people, who has shared our passion in creating a top-notch Cognac, we have persuaded them to allocate us some very old rare spirits which have waited in their cellar for some long 60 years and create the blend. That’s what allowed Monfleurie to become a liquid that perfectly fits the highest standards of ultra-luxury category.
Why have you chosen France as your base for production?
You can, of course, make nice brandy almost everywhere in the world. However, only the Cognac delivers by far the best taste and aroma due to unique geographic conditions and long-standing tradition of savoir-faire. To be called a Cognac, it must be made from grapes grown and distilled in a small French region named Cognac and also some very strict production rules must all be met. Cognac is located in western part of France with precisely defined borders between its 6 different parts and each of them delivers the liquid of well differentiated characteristics. Grande Champagne area is long known to be the best out of all 6. The art of making Cognac has been perfected for long centuries and is a matter of pride for both local community and France as a whole.
We wanted to produce the most special and rare liquid, so France was one and only natural choice for our vision.
Tell us the story behind the choice of your name brand ‘Monfleurie Cognac’
We wanted the name to reflect how personal and important this brand is to us. The fragrance of our Grande Champagne liquid is very floral and delicate. We went to the famed Public Library on 5th Avenue in Manhattan, spent the whole day there going through the French books and the name was born. The name Monfleurie is a word-play of two French words (Mon and Fleurie), that can be interpreted into My Flower or My Treasure. The liquid inside is beautiful and precious and we just love it – we think the word Monfleurie communicates this very well
To what extent your brand is addressing connoisseurs? Are you particularly targeting men or women?
Absolutely, connoisseurs and fine Cognac enthusiasts is our key audience. We are very proud of the liquid we managed to create and enjoy watching people’s faces when they try Monfleurie for the first time.
People love it for a reason. The blend is of highest quality so its richness, balance and complexity are outstanding thus very desirable for people who can appreciate it. Importantly, we are being able to only release it in very small quantities – that’s always something what makes true collectors and connoisseurs wanting not to miss it.
People used to think Cognac is a man’s drink, however many (some 35%) of devoted Cognac lovers are women. From day one, we wanted to properly include women in Monfleurie world the same way as man. Interestingly, our Cognac is stronger than the norm, it is 40.6% alcohol but it is still exceptionally smooth, does not burn your palate and delivers sensational, long lasting drinking pleasure. The colour is naturally glowing, no any side additives or enhancements. In talking to a lot of people we are seeing how all these factors are equally important to both man and women.
Which primary markets are you targeting? Is your product also going to be available for the end consumer or only in designated dining / entertainment venues?
Initially, we created Monfleurie with the US and Asian markets in mind as well as some selected Duty Free locations. This is coming along very well. However, since we launched, we started receiving strong interest coming from the main European metros including luxury On and Off premise venues. This is somewhat unexpected and very pleasing! Our 2 the most recent customers are gorgeous Baccarat Hotel in New York and famous Hedonism Wines store in London. Honored to partner with these names and are looking to add more top name customers to our list.
End consumers can freely purchase Monfleurie on line, via our own website or several major internet liquor stores both in the US and Europe. Fast and convenient. We consider this channel very important but in our strategy tend to prioritize the off line world where people can see, touch and try Monfleurie live.
Do you consider partnerships with other brands from other luxury sectors?
Absolutely so. We consider partnerships with some selected luxury brands essential and desirable. Of course, it must be similar and complimentary to Monfleurie message and positioning. In speaking with potential partners, we are always looking for their dedication to utmost quality and the desire to innovate and create unique new experiences for their consumers. This is how our brand can help. There are several luxury world brands of jewellery, hospitality and fashion that we admire and we are looking partner with them to mutual benefit.
How important is the collaboration with reputed sommeliers? – and the choice of food pairing.
Working with leading sommeliers is very important to us. Even the very-hard-to-impress Cognac specialists (both in the US and Europe) are impressed with Monfleurie quality so serving it in world’s best restaurants and hotels is undoubtedly our target. Sommeliers are guaranteed to receive compliments for offering it to their most demanding and affluent guests. We are open to working closely with them in developing arrangements which would fit their individual needs and ideas.
You have opted for an ultra-luxury hand-made crystal bottle and packaging. Tell us more.
We wanted to create the packaging worthy of the liquid inside so it took us a lot of research and testing to find the right designers and partners.
We have chosen to work with the famous St.Louis crystal factory near Strasbourg because of their admirable tradition of quality that has been cultivated since 1767. Watching their masters turning big hot balls of liquid crystal into beautiful artistic objects leaves you speechless. Similar to our friendship with Maison Boinaud, we love the people who stand behind the art and science at St. Louis, the factory with tremendous history, work pride, creativity and talent concentrated in one place. Our carafe is not just the elegance and the sparkling shine of crystal – it is also these amazing masters who are making it completely by hand, from shaping it, to polishing and Gold engraving.
Creating Monfleurie, we always wanted it to be an impressive gift. So our wooden box is hard to miss in a fine liquor store! We opted for a very brave, unusual luxurious colour. Our box is hand-made in France by a small, highly skilled factory, it is lacquered and polished to a piano grade which delivers a truly luxurious look and the texture.
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