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Hermitage Cognacs toast four Master awards at Global Cognac Masters 2022

Cognac Masters 2022We are thrilled to announce that the Cognac Masters 2022 results have just been released and it was an exceptional medal haul for Hermitage.

A Master Medal was awarded to all four entrants, providing the best set of results for Hermitage ever.  These latest winners are:

Hermitage 10 Year Old Grande Champagne Cognac.  Judge’s comments: Candied orange aromas. Really nice texture to this Cognac, hints of spice and rich fruitiness. Very sippable actually, would also be ideal for mixing.

Hermitage 25 Year Old Grande Champagne Cognac.  Judges’ comments: Superbly expressive nose with rancio, cedar wood and sandalwood, followed by deep dark dried fruits – raisins, prunes, sultanas – milk choc, vanilla, delicious juicy peach and plump sultana, deep woody spices add wonderful earthy notes, long finish that keeps going.

Hermitage 1975 Grande Champagne Cognac.   Judges’ comments: Very resinous palate, dry tannins, slightly saline. Hint of bitterness, stone fruits.

Hermitage 1972 Petite Champagne Cognac  Judges’ comments: Well-rounded palate- some citrus mid-palate, lifts everything. Nice combo of fruit, sweetness and spice – higher ABV holds well. Complex and well balanced.

The MD, David Baker, said

“We are really thrilled by this unprecedented recognition for our brandies. We work incredibly hard to source the very best cognacs we can find in the region, always from single estates and with age statements attached to them, and this is a tremendous reward for our efforts.  It also demonstrates that it’s possible to have exceptional quality, even in the more modest ranges such as with our 10 year old Grande Champagne (which won Master in the the VSOP – single estate flight).”

Read more about the competition results here:    The Cognac Masters 2022 results – The Spirits Business

Latest Hermitage Releases

HermitageWe have recently added two new, exciting releases to our Hermitage Cognac stable, both distilled over 50 years ago.

The 1975 comes from the region near St Preuil, in central Grande Champagne.

An enchanting cognac, it has flavours of clove, turmeric and blackberry complemented by thyme, rosemary, pork crackle with white truffle and kumquats on the tail.

Less than a barrel of this fine, rare cognac exists.

The 1972 vintage comes from Petite Champagne where it has been mellowing in its oak cask for almost 40 years and although its strength is 45% abv, it has a sublime balance.

Petite Champagne cognacs are often lighter than cognacs from their neighbour, Grande Champagne.

This is particularly true in the east of the cru, from where this 1972 originates.

New Hermitage 60 Year Old Grande Champagne Cognac

Hermitage 60 Year OldOur Hermitage 60 Year Old Grande Champagne Cognac has always been popular, not just for its stunning flavours, but because it it the perfect gift for those born in 1962 or with a 60th anniversary this year.

We are therefore very excited that we have a new 60 Year Old to share with you.

Coming from the region around Juillac le Coq, it is beautifully balanced and has flavours of clove, liquorice, roasted chestnuts, cocoa and nutmeg.

We also supply it in a Gift Set comprising a 20 cl bottle and a Hermitage Cognac tulip-shaped tasting glass.

And if 60 years is not the anniversary you are looking for, we also have a 70 Year Old Gift Set and for a very special occasion, one containing a 1900 vintage.


Announcing The Brandy Producer of the Year 2021 …..

Brandy Producer of the YearHermitage Cognacs

Thrilling to hear the International Wine & Spirits Competition announce their Brandy Producer of the Year 2021 this morning ….. “and the winner is Hermitage Cognacs”.  The ceremony can be watched here on  Instagram or on Facebook.

What an amazing accolade especially as we are the first ever British-based cognac house to receive the award.

Our cognacs had amazing success at the IWSC this year:

GOLD OUTSTANDING Medal and The Cognac Trophy was awarded to:

Hermitage 50 Year Old Grande Champagne Cognac

And GOLD Medals were awarded to:

Hermitage 1952 Grande Champagne Cognac

Hermitage 1955 Grande Champagne Cognac

Hermitage Paradis 1890 Grande Champagne Cognac

This haul of medals has culminated in Hermitage Cognacs now winning The Brandy Producer of the Year 2021 which of course recognises the whole Hermitage Cognac range.

Cognac Sector Must Uphold Rules

Cognac SectorThe Spirits Business’ Melita Kiely recently interviewed our MD, David Baker, about the cognac sector and this is what she had to say:

‘From music and wine to fine French spirits, David Baker has had quite the journey building his Hermitage Cognacs brand. He tells us why interest in Cognac is on the rise, and why the category should stay true to its rules and regulations.’

She discusses the merits of Hermitage Paradis 1885 Grande Champagne Cognac which was distilled in the year when Mark Twain published the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in the US, the Statue of Liberty arrived in New York on the French ship Isere and Louis Pasteur successfully tested his vaccine against rabies.  And finishes her article off by saying:

For Baker, quality will be the focal point of all of Hermitage Cognacs’ endeavours, and his quest to find and bottle the rarest, most expressive and complex Cognacs will continue. “At our end of the line, what we’re looking at is to find Cognacs that are beyond comparison, Cognacs that are so good people want to buy them for their own private usage, either as an investment or to keep for their families to be passed on for generations to come,” he says. And long may it continue.

You can read the full article here.

Nusbaumer Eaux de Vie and Liqueurs

NusbaumerWe are very pleased to announce a new addition to our stocks: liqueurs and eaux de vie from Nusbaumer, an independent, family-owned artisanal distillery in the heart of the Alsace.  Founded by Jos Nusbaumer in 1947, the distillery is located in Stiege, a small town in the Vosge valleys, to the south-west of Strasbourg.  There are several factors that make Stiege the ideal place to distil fruit spirits; there’s exceptional mountain spring water, an altitude allowing lower distillation pressure leading to richer aromas and a microclimate with significant temperature variations.  All of these factors have a positive impact on fermentation, maceration and aging.


The eaux de vie include Poire William Rouge which is made exclusively from small red Williams Pears native to the Hautes-Alpes and grown on hillsides with exceptional aspect. The crushed pears are fermented for four weeks and distilled in a small copper-pot still. The eau de vie is then rested for twenty years then reduced with mountain spring water prior to bottling.

We also have Vieille Prune which is made from wild plums sourced in the Fouchy valley, the crushed fruit is fermented for four weeks prior to small copper-pot distillation. The eau de vie is then aged for seven years in chestnut barrels to create a unique roundness and intensity.Nusbaumer





Nusbaumer’s liqueurs are the best of their type that we’ve come across. Unlike most liqueurs that are made from neutral spirit, these are made from the eau de vie of the particular fruit.  For example, cassis is made using blackcurrant eau de vie.  As a consequence, the delivery of flavour and balance is exceptional. These are luxurious and distinguished by their quality.

Bhakta Innovates in the Armagnac Market

Last time we reported that Whistle Pig founder, Raj Bhakta, had bought the armagnac house Maison Ryst Dupeyron.  One wonders if he intends to do for armagnac what he did for rye whiskey over the past decade? After just 12 years of trading, Whistle Pig has become the leading supplier of rye whiskey and sells over 1.2 million cases per year.  Bhakta’s interest in armagnac began in 2017 when Whistle Pig took its priciest rye whiskey and finished it in armagnac barrels. The result, the Black Prince, won best overall whiskey at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. No longer a shareholder in Whistle Pig, Bhakta is now embarking on a new project with his armagnac house purchase.  His first release, Bhakta 50, is a blend of 8 vintages with a minimum age of 50 years which has been finished in smoky, Islay Scotch casks followed by new armagnac casks.  Bhakta feels that this “freshens up” the old spirit, although as a result, it can no longer be called ‘armagnac’.  Keen to bridge the gap between whiskey and armagnac he wants to be creative and “deliver a product of great value and rarity”.  It will be interesting to see if such innovation boosts armagnac’s presence across the brown spirits marketplace.

Sustainability in the Drinks Industry

sustainabilityWe have often reported how the drinks industry is changing its production methods to become more environmentally friendly but now the products themselves are under the spotlight.  A European group, the Circular Economy Platform for Glass Collection & Recycling, is aiming to have 90% of all EU glass packaging recycled by 2030; the figure currently stands at 76%.  A consumer survey found that 80% of Europeans still prefer buying wine and spirits in glass bottles and spending on products packaged in glass has risen 51% in the last 3 years.  The ‘Close the Glass Loop’ group, supported by Spirits Europe, also aims to improve the quality of the recycled glass as currently only 52% of it ends up back in the production loop. However, this has not stopped the production of alternative packaging.  Wine sold in cans has really taken off and Waitrose is pioneering a new sustainable packaging – wine in tubes.  Following their aim to become the leading sustainable retailer in the UK, the ‘bag in tube’ wines are 100% recyclable and contain the equivalent of 3 x 75cl bottles. Once opened, the wine will remain fresh for 10 days longer than when in a glass bottle.  Sustainable packaging has also inspired the Paper Bottle Company (Paboco) which is being supported by Pernod Ricard.  Remy Martin have gone one step further and announced that they will discontinue gift boxes on a number of their products, in certain markets, in order to reduce waste and improve sustainability.

Remy Martin Buys Brillet Cognac

Brillet CognacThe Rémy Cointreau Group has announced their acquisition of Maison de Cognac J.R. Brillet which is based at Graves Saint Amant in the Charente.  The Brillet Cognac sale includes 50 hectares of vineyards located in Grande Champagne and Petite Champagne, the Brillet cognacs and Belle de Brillet, a pear and cognac liqueur.   Good to see its ownership remain with a family owned French firm but the big houses often subsume new cognac stocks into huge generic blends where individual flavours are completely lost.  It has taken a year for this sale to be agreed and during that time the Remy Cointreau Group’s sales have been heavily affected by the COVID-19 crisis.  More specifically, the House of Rémy Martin experienced an organic 7.5% drop in sales during 2019/2020.  An interesting time to increase ones cognac production isn’t it?

Cognac Masters 2020 – Gold & Master Medals

master medalsThe results are out!  We entered 4 of our ever-expanding range of Grande Champagne cognacs into The Spirits Business Cognac Masters this year and came away with 2 x GOLD medals and 2 x MASTER medals.  These could be our best results yet.

GOLD medals were awarded to:

Hermitage 20 Year Old Grande Champagne Cognac  –  “Big and complex cognac”  Judges comments and Hermitage Café 20 Cognac  –  “Delicious … warm spice and a long finish”  Judges comments

MASTER Medals were awarded to:

Hermitage 40 Year Old Grande Champagne Cognac  –  “Wonderfully complex”  Judges comments and Hermitage Eleanor 60 + Year Old Grande Champagne Cognac  “Stunning palate … long finish”  Judges comments.  Price and availability of Hermitage Eleanor in on application.