8.28.18 / New York / New York

Bertoux is a New Brandy for Cocktail Connoisseurs

The Nomad’s Thomas Pastuszak talks us through the new spirit

  • For many people brandy is a bit of a mystery in the world of spirits. Few brandy-specific cocktails are ubiquitously known, and there’s a tendency for people to reach for a bourbon or a scotch when they want a dark and robust drink. But brandy has been misunderstood long enough, and the new label BERTOUX looks to change the perception of the spirit and introduce it to a new generation of cocktail-savvy drinkers.

    BERTOUX was founded by Jeff Menashe, a wine and spirits entrepreneur who brought in PDT mixologist Jeff Bell and The Nomad sommelier Thomas Pastuszak to help formulate it. The duo were key to creating something that had the complexity of a wine (brandy is, after all, created by distilling wine) but has the malleability to be used in cocktails. “It was a really exciting opportunity because this category had not existed before,” Pastuszak explained at the BERTOUX launch party last night at the new Legacy Records-adjacent cocktail bar Ada’s Place. “I’m in it because I think there’s potential based on the fact that no one has done with this niche what we’re trying to do right now. That’s my biggest enthusiasm, and honestly it brings together my love of wine, wine making, and also the wine experience.”

    At the event, BERTOUX enlisted Meaghan Dorman of Raine’s Law Room, Aiden Bowie of the Aviary, and Masahiro Urushido of Katana Kitten to create unique cocktails showcasing the range of the brandy. All three of them also served up Sidecars, the most famous brandy cocktail which was named after the bicycle attachment created by inventor Jean Bertoux. Tucked away in the back room was a bar station where guests enjoyed the spirit neat. “BERTOUX as a brandy on it’s own is really notable because it has more high tone floral citrusy aromatics,” Pastuszak describes. “It’s a fresher, brighter style of brandy than a lot of people are used to. I think the mixability, the freshness, the bright vibrancy—the same refreshing characteristics that you would enjoy in wine—translates to this product.”

    Visit bertouxbrandy.com for more information on BERTOUX and cocktail recipes

  • [Jeff Bell, Thomas Pastuszak]

  • [Photos: Eric Medsker]