NEW YORK, Sept. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Louis Royer, an iconic Cognac house dating to 1853 and led by the fifth generation of its founding family, today announces the 12 finalists of the second annual "Show Me the Proof!" High Proof Cognac Cocktail Competition. The competition is hosted by Hanna Lee Communications, Inc., an award-winning agency specialized in spirits, food, wine, and lifestyle PR and social media marketing. It celebrates Louis Royer "Force 53" VSOP Cognac, which the mixology community has embraced as much for its finesse as its strength. The spirit is at the forefront of reviving Cognac's historic role as a prime cocktail ingredient for all four seasons.
The 12 finalists, in first-name alphabetical order, are as follows: Christian Sanders (Evelyn Drinkery), Claire Needham (The Beagle), Jade Brown-Godfrey (Pouring Ribbons), Jason Cousins (Mondrian SoHo), Jaime Rios (The Standard), Jeremy Oertel (Soho Grand Hotel), Joshua Perez (Middle Branch), Nicholas Bennett (Booker and Dax), Pamela Wiznitzer (The Dead Rabbit), Rafael Reyes (Experimental Cocktail Club), Robert Krueger (Extra Fancy) and Sother Teague (Amor y Amargo). They will compete in New York City on September 18, 2013 for a Grand Prize of an all-expense paid trip to Jarnac and Paris in France, as well as $1,000 in cash prizes for both second and third places.
The final competition will be held at CHERRY, a sultry Japanese/French-inspired restaurant and cocktail den ensconced below the Meatpacking District's Dream Downtown Hotel. It will be judged by leading lights of the spirits/cocktail industry:
- Dale DeGroff - Legendary mixologist and founder of the Museum of the American Cocktail
- Paul Pacult - Noted spirits critic and publisher/editor of The Spirit Journal
- Steve Olson - Founder of aka wine geek and renowned spirits, wine and cocktail expert
- Jack Robertiello - Widely-respected spirits and cocktail writer
- Sara Gore - Host of "Open House" and "New York Live" on NBC and former professional cook
- Jerome Royer - Louis Royer Cognac's Master Selector and a fifth-generation family member
- Tim Cooper - Mixologist at GoldBar and Grand Prize winner of the first "Show Me the Proof!" High Proof Cognac Cocktail Competition
"We are very pleased with the number, quality and creativity of this year's recipe submissions. Clearly, overproof cocktails are here to stay and we're proud to be at the forefront of this trend that continues to capture the imaginations of the bartending community and the public," says Philippe Pichetto, Export Director, Louis Royer Cognac. "The finalists' recipes exhibited a deep and nuanced understanding of 'Force 53' as the foundation of tasty cocktails that can be enjoyed throughout the year."
"The finalists' recipes effectively used the higher proof of 'Force 53' to structure their cocktails and layered in compelling and often surprising flavor combinations to highlight different aspects of the spirit. That said, it will all come down to Game Day," says Hanna Lee, President and Founder, Hanna Lee Communications. "With such worthy and promising recipes from the finalists, the judges really have their work cut out for them."
The cocktail recipe compilation was executed by the competition's partner, ShakeStir.com, a leading online community of thousands of bartenders and mixologists, which promoted it to its members.
About Louis Royer Cognac
Founded in 1853, Louis Royer is an iconic Cognac house located on the banks of the Charente River in Jarnac, France. It is a revered producer of award-winning Cognacs, including VSOP, high proof and XO expressions. In 2013, Louis Royer "Force 53" VSOP Cognac received a "Best in Show" Double Gold Medal at the San Francisco Wine & Spirits Competition and the house's XO was awarded a Gold Medal. In addition, XO was named among the World's Top 120 Spirits by Paul Pacult's renowned The Spirit Journal. Master Blender Laurent Robin works closely with Master Selector Jerome Royer, a fifth-generation family member, together with Master Distiller Monia Martin, to meld together fine eaux-de-vie to create Cognacs of remarkable complexity and approachability. They exemplify the house's bee emblem that symbolizes its passion for work, organization and commitment. For more information, please visit www.louis-royer.com. On social media, please follow us on Twitter at @Force53cognac and like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/LOUISROYERCOGNAC.
SOURCE Louis Royer Cognac