A few weeks ago I had the privilege of attending the Launch of the Hennessy V.S.O.P New Bottle Design and I blogged about that event here.
Legends and greatness are shaped over time.
The legend of Hennessy V.S.O.P began in October 1817 and it’s amazing the cognac’s personality has gone unchanged for nearly 2 centuries. Naturally, such an iconic cognac should be presented in a bottle whose curves signify the elegance and generosity of its content, as well as its balance and exceptional harmony and designer Chris Bangle has been tasked with moving the design of the Hennessy V.S.O.P. bottle forward.
So, who is Chris Bangle?
Christopher Edward “Chris” Bangle is an American automobile designer known for his daring design and far-reaching influence. Bangle is known best for his work as Chief of Design for BMW Group, where he was responsible for the BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce motor cars from 1992 to 2006.
The Hennessy V.S.O.P new carafe is his first masterpiece outside the automobile industry. For Hennessy V.S.O.P., the designer first sought to identify the cognac’s personality by delving into its history. For him, a product cannot be summed up by a function or an aesthetic: a product is living thing. Chris sums it up: “Designing for Hennessy gave me the same sensations as working on designs for fast BMWs or a great Rolls Royce. It is that experience of a unique emotion.”
So, how different is the new bottle compared to the previous bottle?
Hennessy V.S.O.P. Bottle Design – Key Changes
• Slightly accentuated the curve in the side of the bottle, reinforcing the dynamic of its silhouette (by less than 1 mm).
• Inspired by the Hennessy V.S.O.P. bottle created in 1954, Chris Bangle chose to confirm this upward movement with a thicker base resembling a pedestal to distinguish the whole and stabilise it.
• Added a hollow bottom to the bottle to adapt it for handling.
• Lengthened the bottle’s neck and straightened its shoulders, stretching it vertically.
• Drew two lines of perspectives in the glass around the central label, creating an optical effect by structuring the front of the bottle with a pyramid perspective (a reminder of the notion of uplift, dear to V.S.O.P.) Actually, this geometry attracts one’s regard towards the top of the bottle, where Chris Bangle chose to engrave the legendary arm and axe of the Hennessy family into the glass itself.
• Revised the choice of paper and colours for the labels: a few millimetres from the arm and axe, the symbolic Hennessy V.S.O.P. oval is coloured in a dark grey ennobled with golden embossing, a reminder of the alchemy of contrasts comprising it. The main label highlights this refinement with a shimmering gloss imprinted with clusters of grapes and vine leaves in the background as a subliminal reminder of the origins of the cognac contained in the bottle.
So, now the new bottle is certainly sleeker and sexier, yet functional and still retaining the prestigious fine elements of the House of Hennessy.
Not only has Chris Bangle revamped the bottle design, the box it comes in has also undergone a few changes, giving it an edge to a more modern vision.
Hennessy V.S.O.P. Box Design – Key Changes
• The sides have been refined so that all we see is the bottle, dramatised by photographer Adam Savitch.
• The “Superior” quality of the cognac is evoked by the liquid splash of V.S.O.P. on the back of the bottle, a reminder of the curves of an “S”.
• Lastly, one side of the box, called “Black Tie”, glorifies elegant purity on a black background decorated with a band of golden vine leaves, echoing the bottle’s label. This band is part of the heritage of the Hennessy V.S.O.P. box created in 1954, where it appeared in a red and gold version.
The Security Features of Hennessy V.S.O.P. have also been updated:
• A laser stamp for the 35-cl, 70-cl and 3-litre bottles and a hologram of increased complexity (now with new horizontal lines forming a grape cluster) seal the cap. The “Superior” quality of the cognac is evoked by the liquid splash of V.S.O.P. on the back of the bottle, a reminder of the curves of an “S”.
Watch this video below and be fascinated with his ideas and concept for the new bottle design of Hennessy V.S.O.P…
For more updates on Hennessy V.S.O.P and events, please visit their Facebook Page here and LIKE the page!
*All photos and graphics are courtesy of Hennessy Malaysia