OK so this is absolute genius and a pleasure to blog – those friends of mine clearly rock the crazy food scientist vibe. Sadly no swimming in the punch bowl is allowed (boo hiss) but here is all you need to know. If you want to go it is only £6.50 – it is hard to think of better value for money in London, at Christmas. I am so excited about the preview next week I am likely to pop :-)
PUNCH BOWL BIG ENOUGH TO SERVE 25,000 PEOPLE OPENING IN LONDON ON 8th DEC
The Emperor’s Shrub has been chosen as the punch that fills the Courvoisier Architectural Punch Bowl, a drinkable installation so large you can boat across it. Alex James will be among the first to toast this incredible feat of engineering and raise the first glass of this bespoke Courvoisier punch.
Courvoisier and Bompas & Parr are exploding cocktails to the most extraordinary size – the scale of buildings. Opening on 8th December, innovative techniques and technology will be combined to create a punch bowl on an architectural scale at 33 Portland Place.
In the run up to the installation a competition was hosted to determine the recipe to fill the Courvoisier Architectural Punch Bowl. Joe McCanta, sommelier and mixologist at Saf won with his Emperor’s Shrub. The recipe combines Courvoisier Exclusif, a cognac specially designed for mixing in cocktails, berries, organic cider vinegar, and winter spices and impressed 13 independent judges including Jonathan Meades of the BBC and Ruth Reed the president of RIBA.
Over the past six months Bompas & Parr has been working with UCL to research how the built environment can be transformed into a vast punch bowl. How do you make a building food-safe? What technology can be used to keep a vast volume of drink at optimum temperature? Consulting engineers Arup have provided technical support to make sure the punch bowl is structurally sound and doesn’t collapse under the huge weight of alcohol.
Alex James has been sampling the punch throughout to ensure its quality. On the 8th December he will be briefing the first visitors on the health and safety procedures in place to ensure the punch is served in peak condition.
Harry Parr of Bompas & Parr comments:
“The structural elements have been built and tested. Now we are studying the possibility of engineering remote controlled garnishes for the vast Punch Bowl!”
Janice McIntosh of Courvoisier comments:
“Courvoisier is delighted to be collaborating with Bompas & Parr on this revolutionary exhibition. Building on a strong historical precedent to create an extraordinary and modern installation is an ideal way to showcase Courvoisier Exclusif, our award-winning and highly versatile mixable cognac. It is also great to welcome Taste Consultant Alex James to the team, to ensure the quality of this exclusive Courvoisier punch and guarantee your seal of approval”
There is strong historical precedent for the Courvoisier Architectural Punch Bowl. In 1694 the admiral Edward Russell created a punch bowl so large it served 6,000 people, took 2,500 lemons to make and was served by a small boy in a boat. The Courvoisier Architectural Punch Bowl is bigger – it contains over a tonne of Courvoisier Cognac and can serve over 25,000 people.
The Architectural Punch Bowl will raise money for built environment charity Article 25 (www.article-25.org), a charity that designs and constructs buildings for development agencies, NGOs and communities wherever there is disaster, poverty or need.
- Tickets for the Architectural Punch Bowl are priced at £6.50 and are available from www.jellymongers.co.uk
- The venue is 33 Portland Place, London, W1B 1QE
- Charity Article 25 will receive 20% from each ticket sold.
- The Architectural Punch Bowl will be open on 8th, 9th and 10th December.
- No swimming!
If you need more information / or are press interesting in covering the event then feel free to e-mail me for more contact details.