The perfect brunch: Cocktails, French Toast and an education on taste profiles

posted on: Monday, 21 August 2017

Here's a useful dinner party tip to pull out in a lull- did you know humans have five taste profiles? They are: sweet, sour, bitter, salty and umami. Makes sense, right? That pretty accurately breaks down the meals and treats we enjoy throughout the day. It also made for the topic of discussion at a brunch the other day where our entire menu was planned around these taste profiles and discovering which one we're most drawn to when it comes to putting together the perfect pairing of cocktails and french toast at brunch. Tell me you aren't already salivating thinking of French Toast and cocktails?

Last week, Grey Goose invited me to attend the Le Grand Fizz Brunch Club in Marylebone to sample a menu designed by super chef Anna Barnett and cocktails from Dan Berger, Head of Bars at The Ned. As I was sitting with my Grey Goose "family," as this is a team of people that have become a most unexpected and special part of my life as of late, I truly felt I was exactly where I was meant to be right then and there, experiencing a way to brunch like I've never done before. Allow me to explain. 

Over the past few months I've learned more than I ever thought possible about culinary cocktail pairing, with the team at Grey Goose. We've explored different foods, settings and even times of day when it comes to enjoying a carefully crafted Grey Goose cocktail. However, my education with Grey Goose actually began with this aforementioned concept of our five taste profiles. And for the Le Grand Fizz Brunch Club, I was given a chance to see all those taste profiles brought to life once again right in front of me. So yes, I suppose you could say Brunch for me was given a new leg up with this unique approach. 

Upon entering the space, in London's famous neighbourhood of Marylebone, each guest was offered a chance to sample five different versions of Le Grand Fizz, each one from a recipe designed by Dan Berger. Two bartenders explained that each and every cocktail would appeal to everyone's palette, but there would be that one special taste that was particularly suited to you. It was no surprise that I went directly for the sweet treat! 

Just imagine, however, a room full of guests, discovering their taste profile for the first time as we sip the world's best testing vodka mixed in with some of the world's finest ingredients for the perfect cocktail concoction- Le Grand Fizz. "Best like best," as they say. Each sip of the various Le Grand Fizz creations were also accompanied by canapes designed to reflect the individual taste profiles we were busy at work discovering for the morning. But, there's more to come. 

Alongside identifying our cocktail preferences, we were also given a very unique brunch moment when Anna Barnett introduced her concept for French Toast. As plates of the brunch classic were placed in front of every guest, Anna explained that five stations were set up around the room. Each station reflected a taste profile and had a number of different French Toast toppings that would make for the perfect "make your own" French Toast moment. Everything from shredded lobster to classic maple syrup was on offer. This, folks, is a classic move by Grey Goose, who are constantly encouraging their consumers to think more deeply about their connection with taste. After all, Francois Thibault developed Grey Goose vodka with taste in mind. Guests, one by one, stepped forward with their plates and made their French Toast a masterpiece for themselves.

This has to be one of the most clever brunch concepts I've ever experienced, and it must be said that the idea of a "make your own" French Toast bar is a thing of pure genius. Add to that the concept of educating your guests along the way and you have a recipe for absolute success. No lulls in conversation there, except perhaps for the moment or two when we all just closed our eyes to savour the perfect sip or bite! 

Fashion Foie Gras worked in collaboration with Grey Goose.