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Cordon Rouge Room  presented by Grand Marnier

Together with media and online influencers, we were recently invited to an exclusive, sensory experience at The Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge Room Speakeasy in Downtown Vancouver.

Fans of the locally-filmed TV series Riverdale will instantly recognize the location near Gastown where interior scenes of Veronica Lodge’s mansion are shot. My friend Annie and I waited outside and upon our selected time slot, headed down a set of mystery stairs to show our pass codes on our phones at the door.

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Walking past empty rooms in the basement, then up a flight of stairs, we were greeted by handsome bartenders on the main floor.

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[Bartenders mixing together our first Grand Sidecars]

We watched our speakeasy bartenders concoct our first Grand Marnier cocktail, the Grand Sidecar.

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[Grand Sidecar cocktail by Aaron Mule featuring Grand Marnier shaken with Pink Lemonade Tea Syrup, topped with a dehydrated lime wheel]

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With our first drink in hand, we were guided behind closed curtains past cozy lounge seating to a beautiful 1920’s Prohibition-era-styled ballroom.

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[Guests enjoyed the sultry sounds of a live trio flown in from NYC to add to the evening’s ambiance]

As if transported back into time to the roaring 20’s, the room was illuminated in red, with servers dressed in suspenders or gold and red-fringed dresses. We were led to a table by the stage decorated with red balloons held in place with large bottles of Grand Marnier.

As we mingled with other influencers and swayed to live jazz melodies, we ordered Grand Marnier cocktails and mini desserts from a specially-designed menu.

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[Watch Over Me by Grant Sceney with Grand Marnier, Wild Turkey bourbon whiskey, lemon juice, Bittered Sling Clingstone peach bitters, sparkling water, topped with rosemary sprigs]

We both admired the Watch Over Me cocktail invented by Vancouverite Grant Sceney, crowned 2014 and 2016’s Canadian Bartender of the Year. Sceney continues to stir and muddle his way through international competitions to rank as one of the top bartenders in the world.

This cocktail featured peach bitters made with BC-grown and harvested peaches by locally-based Bittered Sling Bitters.

Bittered Sling is a partnership between celebrated chef Jonathan Chovancek and award-winning mixologist/sommelier Lauren Mote that includes a retail line of high-quality cocktail bitters and culinary extracts.

Though bitters were originally marketed as a medicinal tonic, they’ve become indispensable tools for bartenders and culinary professionals alike for savoury and sweet creations.

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[Mini tiramisu and charlotte cake desserts by Faubourg Bakery and Cafe with our cocktails and The Grand Sling Book]

From The Grand Sling Book, a tribute to great cocktails by Grand Marnier and Bittered Sling Bitters, we found additional modern cocktail inspiration and historical stories.

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[With a giant bottle of Grand Marnier]

Since 1880, Grand Marnier has represented French artistry and craftsmanship, its liqueur aged in French oak and blended at the Chateau de Bourg-Chartene in southwest France.

Did you know that the iconic bottle is shaped after a traditional Cognac pot still? I always considered Grand Marnier an orange liqueur and hadn’t realized that it’s primarily a blend of cognacs together with exotic essence of oranges from their own farms in the Caribbean.

With the tying of ribbon and careful placement of the wax seal, the Grand Marnier bottle design pays homage to individual care and passion; each bottle is treated as a work of art.

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[Grand Nuage featuring Grand Marnier, tequila, freshly squeezed lime juice with a floating smokey orange cloud inside the glass]

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[Enjoying Grand Nuage and Watch Over Me cocktails at Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge Room]

Find more recipes and cocktail recipes at Grand Marnier online.

Photos by Yumi Ang and Annie La.

About Our Contributor Yumi Ang

Yumi Ang

Yumi Ang is a Vancouver-born and raised multidisciplinary, creative professional. Curiosity for innovation drives her to branding, advertising and marketing. Outside her design work, Yumi stays inspired by discovering the latest gift ideas through events and new adventures. Find Yumi on Twitter @yumi_ang.

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