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Last week the very kind people at Chambord invited me to Chambord Rendezvous 2011, an industry event held to find talented bartenders and chefs from across the UK and bring them together in an award ceremony to celebrate food and cocktails, with the winners having their recipes served at the event and accepting their prizes (trips to Paris and the Loire Valley). I took my lovely BFF Kirsty, as not only is she the only person I know who enjoys cocktails as much as me but she is moving to New York on Wednesday and I won’t see her for a whole three months, sniff sniff.
We were greeted with Chambord Royales and had the chance to nose around the beautiful venue, One Mayfair. That evening I’d had a huge ‘nothing to wear’ crisis and on a whim decided to debut some silk trousers from Zara that looked disturbingly like pyjamas until I reached London and put my heels on. Kirsty looked awesome as she always does.
Starter was Fois Gras with a Chambord jelly and Asparagus Veloute, matched with a Rosemount Chardonnay. This was followed by a delicious piece of Venison teamed with Chambord poached pears and Dauphinoise potatoes wrapped in pancetta.
Dessert was a Chambord and Raspberry parfait served with a Chambord granita. Award-winning Chambord cocktails were served pre- and post-dinner, though none were as good as my all-time favourite, the mighty French Martini.
After dinner the tables were cleared to make way for the arrival of more drinks insiders for a party led by DJ Edith Bowman and one of my favourite comedians, Russell Kane.
Girls in feathers delivered canapés and barmen mixed up more lovely Chambord cocktails… there were some serious shapes being thrown on the dancefloor but as Kirsty and I are elegant and refined we bobbed our heads on the sidelines (this might not be true).
We had an absolutely wonderful time and I left the party loving Chambord as much as when I arrived. Big thanks to Chambord for inviting and hosting us so well!
2 oz Vodka
½ oz Chambord
2 ½ oz Pineapple Juice
Pour each of the above into a tall bar glass. Shake with ice, pour into a cocktail or martini glass, and serve.