RSS Feeds

Advanced search

You are in:


Bernar Venet art holds Martell Premier Voyage

Martell Cognac has created a limited edition blend in recognition of the brand’s 300th anniversary next year.

In celebration of the House’s Tricentenary, cellar master, Benoît Fil returned to Martell’s roots to create Martell Premier Voyage; a unique new blend containing 18 eaux‑de‑vie from Martell’s cellars.

Using Jean Martell’s original correspondence, Fil pieced together a map of Jean Martell’s key suppliers from 1735-1742, and began to retrace his footsteps 300 years on. Visiting winegrowers just as Jean Martell did generations before him, Fil sampled eaux-de-vie and met with the winegrowing families whose ancestors had originally supplied the brand’s founder. After crafting the blend and then ageing in barrels made from the oak of a 300 year-old tree, Martell Premier Voyage was born; an exceptional and distinctive new blend, and the perfect homage to Jean Martell. 

Fil comments: “The desire was to create a blend that reflected the journey and history of Jean Martell. We had access in our archives to the exact geographical locations that he went to. Therefore, we were able to visit the descendants of these winegrowers who today create the best quality eaux-de-vie. Martell Premier Voyage takes the best things from the past of Cognac and Jean Martell’s vision, and makes them something that we can enjoy today. This new blend truly captures three centuries of Martell turning cognac into art.” 

French conceptual artist Bernar Venet was invited to lend his distinctive, minimalist style by creating a stunning artwork in which to house the precious cognac. Venet’s timeless design comprises metal arcs which are divided into three clusters, evoking the 300 year anniversary, which shelter a simple and elegant teardrop-shaped Sèvres crystal decanter. The striking juxtaposition between the serenely flowing shape of the bottle and the powerful energy and aged appearance emanating from the Cor-Ten steel arcs demonstrates the union between tradition and modern visionary spirit. The blend can only be drawn from the sculpture with a fusil; a pipette used by the cellar master to extract and taste eaux-de-vie from the barrels.

Bernar Venet says of the collaboration: “I was inspired by the date 1715, as the year that Louis XIV died and this great cognac house was born. I have in the past created a sculpture around a statue of Louis XIV, and I wanted a sense of continuity with my work. The arches in the work represent this continuity, and a sense of time. The three arc clusters represent the three centuries that we are celebrating. There are so many parallels between Versailles, the birthplace of Art De Vivre, and Martell and with what I do.”

Only 300 pieces of this blend will be available worldwide. Each will be individually signed, numbered and produced to order. Martell Premier Voyage is priced at €10,000. A registration list is now open and accepting enquiries at

11 October 2014 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor