How you celebrate your wedding anniversary is all about personal taste. From the choice of gifts to where you would like to travel for a romantic getaway – and your favourite tipple for a celebratory toast.
When celebrating with an extended group of family and friends, the Champagne (or Spanish cava) will invariably be flowing freely but, if alone with your partner, one year you might prefer a less traditional anniversary drink as you clink glasses to toast another 12 months of happy married life.
We delved into the digital cellar to find out how some of the world’s most celebrated brands have been combining their creative skills, and discovered three exquisite marriages of flavours and aromas: a cognac from Hennessy X.O and Frank Gehry; a malt whisky from Bowmore and Aston Martin; and a Champagne cuvée from Bugatti and CARBON.
All three, in addition to exceptional toasts, would also make superb gifts… for him, her, your parents or another couple celebrating their wedding anniversary.
Hennessy X.O and Frank Gehry
Celebrating its 150th anniversry this year, Hennessy X.O asked architect Frank Gehry to reinterpret the “timeless bottle containing the exceptional elixir emblematic of Hennessy’s unique savoir-faire”.
In 1870, maison head Maurice Hennessy and cellar master Emile Fillioux – sharing a passion for long-aged eaux-de-vie – decided to create an exceptional blend with a rich and complex structure. They called it “X.O” for “Extra Old”, one of the first-ever such cognacs.
Hennessy X.O is also known for its iconic carafe, and when the cognac was first created it was contained in the “charentaises” bottles that had appeared a few years earlier. The innovative flacon of today was designed in 1947, with the shape of the new sculpted glass bottle inspired by an upturned cluster of grapes.
Seventy-three years later, Gehy – whose designs include the Guggenheim Bilbao, Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, Musée des Beaux-Arts Ontario, Opus Tower in Hong Kong and Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris – revisited the iconic carafe.
“I wanted to bring Hennessy X.O. to life,” he explained, ”and so I took inspiration from its birthplace and used this crumpling effect of the material that gives it a feeling of movement. The materials I’ve chosen catch the light and make this a really beautiful object on its own, but then you realise it is a bottle of Hennessy X.O.”
The collaboration between Gehry and Hennessy led to several striking creations, including a bottle enveloped in a crinkled sleeve of 24-carat gold-dipped bronze, encased in a sculptural glass glorifier. To further the decanter experience, Gehry also created a brass and gold fusil, reflecting the Hennessy cellar master’s ritual for serving the Extra Old cognac.
This masterpiece is available at the Hennessy store in Cognac in 150 numbered decanters imprinted with Frank Gehry’s signature.
Bugatti & CARBON
Another anniversary celebration… but this one more recent. In 2019, the Bugatti Chiron Super Sport 300+1 became the first series production car to break the 300-mile barrier, reaching a top speed of 304.773 miles per hour (490.484 km/h).
One year later, Bugatti’s official Champagne, CARBON, has celebrated the milestone with a new cuvée as the latest addition to its EB.02 range – a limited edition comprising a 2006 vintage blanc de blancs Grand Cru.
“Before discovering some acacia, grilled bread, almonds and hazelnuts aromas on the nose,” they note, “one may enjoy a deep gold colour and millions of fine bubbles appearing in the glass. As an aperitif to accompany caviar or some of the finest Pata Negra ham, also as a companion to a main course with pan-fried duck foie gras with roasted chips…” And, of course, perfect for a wedding anniversary. The bottle packaging references the hyper sports car’s special design and colour features.
As for the actual Chiron Super Sport 300+ (for those whose budget extends to both car and Champagne), it is the most powerful Bugatti ever built. It has a power output of 1,600 PS and is visually highlighted by its aerodynamically optimised body, the “long tail“, among other features.
The body is made of exposed, black carbon fibre set through in the centre with racing stripes in orange. The interior is dominated by black carbon, leather and Alcantara in Beluga Black, contrasted by colour accents in orange.
The Champagne CARBON EB.02 Chiron 300+ can be order exclusively at champagnecarbon.eu.
Bowmore and Aston Martin
Black Bowmore DB5 1964 is the first collaborative creation unveiled by Bowmore Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky and Aston Martin. Only 25 bottles are for sale of this “handcrafted vessel housing an equally exceptional single malt… inspired by the past but truly breath-taking in today’s world”.
The year 1964 is significant for both companies. “For Bowmore, 1964 is arguably one of the most significant points in the distillery’s 240-year history. The arrival of a new boiler saw the distillery enter the modern age of distilling as coal fires made way for steam in heating the stills. It was the first distillation from this new boiler that produced the spirit which was to become the iconic Black Bowmore; a sublimely rich and decadent single malt, reflected in awe-inspiring deep darkness.”
The latest release represents only the sixth bottling of this single malt. Since 1993, just 6,000 bottles of Black Bowmore have been made available.
For Aston Martin, this was the era of their most iconic car. Launched in 1963, the Aston Martin DB5 “is now widely regarded as ‘the most famous car in the world’, not least by virtue of its links to the world’s most celebrated secret agent in 1964”.
The Black Bowmore DB5 bottle is handcrafted by Glasstorm, a bespoke contemporary glass studio based in North East Scotland. Each bottle took up to one week to be completed, and Black Bowmore DB5 1964 is presented in a handmade presentation box – also a work of art – inspired by the distillery’s coastal home.