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Cognac

For more than three centuries cognac has been recognised as the finest of all spirits distilled from grapes. It is incomparable in its sheer depth and intensity of flavour, its fruitiness, warmth and complexity and both its richness and subtlety of bouquet. Indeed cognac is the king of all brandies and originates from around the sixteenth century when farmers grew grapes for wines which were shipped along the Charente River in France to the port of La Rochelle, where they were bartered for goods brought in by English, Irish and Dutch traders. Often the weak and acidic wines would become rancid and traders learnt to reduce them by boiling them in pot stills. The strong wines were stored in oak casks which enhanced their flavour and gave them colour, they called them Cognac from around the town of that name in the centre of the Charente region.

Today there are around five thousand producers of the noble spirit, most making it for the big houses such as Hennessey Martell, Courvoisier and Remy Martin who blend them for their generic brands. Many of these old cognac families have been distilling their wines for generations developing the knowledge passed down from their forefathers and perfecting the skills of distillation and ageing. Some of the very oldest cognacs may have lived in their barrels or glass demijohns in cellars for hundreds of years and have today become priceless nectars of increasing rarity and value. Hermitage Cognacs are from individual single estate distillers, all of whom have aged their cognacs naturally and without the addition of additives. They are the very quintessence of purity and luxury. They are the king of all cognacs.

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  1. Cognac Hermitage 1993 Ambleville Grande Champagne

    Made by a highly respected old family in Ambleville near Segonzac in Grande Champagne who make very tradtional cognacs.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: There is an immediate sensation of freshness and balance. Mandarin, white pepper, pineapple, ginger, a variety of dynamic aromas
    Flavour:
    Flavour: On the palate, lots of yellow fruit, melon, pear. Followed by fresh peppermint and eucalyptus . It has an aromatic complexity impressive for its age
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    Excl. VAT: £95.00 Incl. VAT: £114.00

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    Made by a highly respected old family in Ambleville near Segonzac in Grande Champagne who make very tradtional cognacs.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: There is an immediate sensation of freshness and balance. Mandarin, white pepper, pineapple, ginger, a variety of dynamic aromas
    Flavour:
    Flavour: On the palate, lots of yellow fruit, melon, pear. Followed by fresh peppermint and eucalyptus . It has an aromatic complexity impressive for its age
    Learn More
  2. Cognac Hermitage 1991 Ambleville Grande Champagne

    Pale and delicate in colour and taste. It is made by a highly respected old family in Ambleville near Segonzac in Grande Champagne.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Rosemary, dried citrus peel and hazelnuts
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Delicate in taste, the flavour is reminiscent of pears and mace with a dried grapefruit and oak finish. It has a medium length with great balance
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    Excl. VAT: £96.44 Incl. VAT: £115.73

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    Pale and delicate in colour and taste. It is made by a highly respected old family in Ambleville near Segonzac in Grande Champagne.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Rosemary, dried citrus peel and hazelnuts
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Delicate in taste, the flavour is reminiscent of pears and mace with a dried grapefruit and oak finish. It has a medium length with great balance
    Learn More
  3. Cognac Hermitage 1990 Ambleville Grande Champagne

    Pale and delicate in colour and taste. It is made by a highly respected old family in Ambleville near Segonzac in Grande Champagne. The aroma of fresh straw and citrus peel is complemented by a flavour of agave, aloe (gripe water) and almonds.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Fresh straw and dried tangerine peel. There is also some hazel nut, brioche and floral aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Delicate in taste, the flavour is reminiscent of agave, aloe (gripe water) and almonds. It has a medium length with great balance
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    Excl. VAT: £98.06 Incl. VAT: £117.67

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    Pale and delicate in colour and taste. It is made by a highly respected old family in Ambleville near Segonzac in Grande Champagne. The aroma of fresh straw and citrus peel is complemented by a flavour of agave, aloe (gripe water) and almonds.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Fresh straw and dried tangerine peel. There is also some hazel nut, brioche and floral aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Delicate in taste, the flavour is reminiscent of agave, aloe (gripe water) and almonds. It has a medium length with great balance
    Learn More
  4. Raymond Ragnaud 1990 Grande Champagne Cognac

    A glorious example of how good young cognacs can be from this house. It is still in wood and has a dry and citrus long finish. If you like this style, buy it now, it is surprisingly good value.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Fresh straw and dried tangerine peel. There is also some hazel nut, brioche and floral aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Delicate in taste, the flavour is reminiscent of agave, aloe (gripe water) and almonds. It has a medium length with great balance
    Learn More
    Excl. VAT: £98.25 Incl. VAT: £117.90

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    A glorious example of how good young cognacs can be from this house. It is still in wood and has a dry and citrus long finish. If you like this style, buy it now, it is surprisingly good value.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Fresh straw and dried tangerine peel. There is also some hazel nut, brioche and floral aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Delicate in taste, the flavour is reminiscent of agave, aloe (gripe water) and almonds. It has a medium length with great balance
    Learn More
  5. Cognac Hine Vintage 1987 (Early Landed) Grande Champagne

    The early landed cognacs from Hine have been matured in cellars in the UK. Cognacs aged this way can be affected by the drier conditions which allow the barrels to absorb more cognac. It was landed in 1990 and bottled in 2005.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Soft floral aromas of violets and summer straw.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: A dryer cognac with tones of vanilla, citrus fruits and some dry spices.
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    Excl. VAT: £99.53 Incl. VAT: £119.44

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    The early landed cognacs from Hine have been matured in cellars in the UK. Cognacs aged this way can be affected by the drier conditions which allow the barrels to absorb more cognac. It was landed in 1990 and bottled in 2005.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Soft floral aromas of violets and summer straw.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: A dryer cognac with tones of vanilla, citrus fruits and some dry spices.
    Learn More
  6. Chateau de Beaulon 20 y.o. Napoleon Cognac

    Similar to the 12 year old but more mature with floral and delicate herb aromas. It is well balanced and shows no aggressive qualities common in other Napoleon cognacs.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Some dry spice, floral tones, nut and vanilla, some vine cane
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Some nutty flavours. A hint of coffee and vanilla with a little oak, medium dry flavour.
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    Excl. VAT: £99.67 Incl. VAT: £119.60

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    Similar to the 12 year old but more mature with floral and delicate herb aromas. It is well balanced and shows no aggressive qualities common in other Napoleon cognacs.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Some dry spice, floral tones, nut and vanilla, some vine cane
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Some nutty flavours. A hint of coffee and vanilla with a little oak, medium dry flavour.
    Learn More
  7. Tesseron 76 Grande Champagne Cognac

    Tesseron have some very old and interesting cellars which hold some considerable stocks of old cognacs. The number 76 originally referred to 1976 to get round rules in age identification. They are rich and nutty with citrus and vine cane aromas.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Very alluring and expressive, this presents a sensation of fruit compote layered with hints of honey and leather, all lifted by floral tones – very elegant.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Generous on attack, this presents a wonderful, spicy vitality, complementing  a harmonious, rounded style
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    Excl. VAT: £100.00 Incl. VAT: £120.00

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    Tesseron have some very old and interesting cellars which hold some considerable stocks of old cognacs. The number 76 originally referred to 1976 to get round rules in age identification. They are rich and nutty with citrus and vine cane aromas.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Very alluring and expressive, this presents a sensation of fruit compote layered with hints of honey and leather, all lifted by floral tones – very elegant.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Generous on attack, this presents a wonderful, spicy vitality, complementing  a harmonious, rounded style
    Learn More
  8. Cognac Hine Vintage 1981 Grande Champagne

    A well known name with links to Hennessy. The last owner was Bernard Hine, one of the Cognac Grandees. Dry and floral with vine cane and straw aroma. The cognac has been aged in UK cellars, landed in 1986 and bottled in 1999.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Soft floral aromas of violets and summer straw.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: A dryer cognac with tones of vanilla, citrus fruits and some dry spices.
    Learn More
    Excl. VAT: £100.09 Incl. VAT: £120.11

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    A well known name with links to Hennessy. The last owner was Bernard Hine, one of the Cognac Grandees. Dry and floral with vine cane and straw aroma. The cognac has been aged in UK cellars, landed in 1986 and bottled in 1999.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Soft floral aromas of violets and summer straw.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: A dryer cognac with tones of vanilla, citrus fruits and some dry spices.
    Learn More
  9. Cognac Grosperrin 1988 Fins Bois
    From the cellars in Chermignac close to La Rochelle. These are exceptional cognacs with age statements. The firm only associates itself with naturally aged cognacs
    Aroma:
    Aroma: Elegant aroma of citrus fruits and cedar. It has a fresh and quite lively feature
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Very few Fins Bois cognacs are approved by Brandyclassics. This is a credit to its makers and is highly regarded with its elegant grapefruit taste
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    Excl. VAT: £101.50 Incl. VAT: £121.80

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    From the cellars in Chermignac close to La Rochelle. These are exceptional cognacs with age statements. The firm only associates itself with naturally aged cognacs
    Aroma:
    Aroma: Elegant aroma of citrus fruits and cedar. It has a fresh and quite lively feature
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Very few Fins Bois cognacs are approved by Brandyclassics. This is a credit to its makers and is highly regarded with its elegant grapefruit taste
    Learn More
  10. Cognac Hermitage 1989 Chez Richon Grande Champagne

    This cognac was produced on a small still on this highly regarded estate that grows not just Ugni Blanc but also Folle Blanche grapes. It has a youthful aroma displaying pineapple and grapefruit aromas and drier citrus and herb flavours which are enhanced by the slightly higher strength of this cognac.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Roasted walnuts and some pineapple, a little pepper with oak and spices
    Flavour:
    Flavour: This is still a young cognac and there is a developing pineapple, walnut, spice, banana and medlar fruits complexity on the palate. Good balance and very long on the palate. This is at an ideal strength for the cognac.
    Learn More
    Excl. VAT: £103.94 Incl. VAT: £124.73

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    This cognac was produced on a small still on this highly regarded estate that grows not just Ugni Blanc but also Folle Blanche grapes. It has a youthful aroma displaying pineapple and grapefruit aromas and drier citrus and herb flavours which are enhanced by the slightly higher strength of this cognac.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Roasted walnuts and some pineapple, a little pepper with oak and spices
    Flavour:
    Flavour: This is still a young cognac and there is a developing pineapple, walnut, spice, banana and medlar fruits complexity on the palate. Good balance and very long on the palate. This is at an ideal strength for the cognac.
    Learn More
  11. Cognac Hermitage 1988 Chez Richon Grande Champagne

    Cognac Masters 2013 - Gold Award

    The predominant house style of Chez Richon shows through in this cognac although it is rather sweeter and spicier than others from this house

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Roasted walnuts and some pineapple, a little pepper with oak and spices
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Different from other cognacs from this estate.The cognac has some quite spicy tones but is also slightly sweeter than the others. The flavour is reminiscent of roasted walnuts, spice and toffee
    Learn More
    Excl. VAT: £105.98 Incl. VAT: £127.18

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    Cognac Masters 2013 - Gold Award

    The predominant house style of Chez Richon shows through in this cognac although it is rather sweeter and spicier than others from this house

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Roasted walnuts and some pineapple, a little pepper with oak and spices
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Different from other cognacs from this estate.The cognac has some quite spicy tones but is also slightly sweeter than the others. The flavour is reminiscent of roasted walnuts, spice and toffee
    Learn More
  12. Fontpinot XO Cognac

    A rare single domaine cognac from the centre of Segonzac with a remarkable story. The house is part of Frapin owned by the Cointreau family. Highly regarded XO cognac.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: More nutty than the Frapin vintages, rich fruits vanilla, oak and tobacco. There is a level of rancio
    Flavour:
    Flavour: This is altogether richer and darker than the Frapin cognacs. It has great depth and balance Roasted walnut and tobacco with vanilla and toffee tones.
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    Excl. VAT: £106.14 Incl. VAT: £127.37

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    A rare single domaine cognac from the centre of Segonzac with a remarkable story. The house is part of Frapin owned by the Cointreau family. Highly regarded XO cognac.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: More nutty than the Frapin vintages, rich fruits vanilla, oak and tobacco. There is a level of rancio
    Flavour:
    Flavour: This is altogether richer and darker than the Frapin cognacs. It has great depth and balance Roasted walnut and tobacco with vanilla and toffee tones.
    Learn More

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