Best XO Cognacs for 2016

cognac-expert-_best_xo_cognacsThe best XO Cognacs for 2016

This list is based on taste alone; a completely blind taste test – we didn’t know the brand, and we didn’t see any packaging or bottles. We tasted 24 XOs in total. 4 persons participated, including Max. The scoring was solely on the nose, body and after taste. We hope you like our tasting results and find them useful. We rated our tasting results using a point system. This was based on the valuation averages of each member of the tasting team. These notes were structured, combining tasting aromas that were split into four general taste categories: Flower, Fruit, Wood, Spice. The ‘Smooth’ value is based on a 1-10 star rating.  And here are the results…

96 points: Baron Otard XO

A surprising winner…  We first tasted this Cognac some years ago during our Chateau de Cognac & Otard visit. We also took home a bottle – a bottle which somehow did not get as much attention in our cabinet as it should have. Baron Otard XO Gold is an extra old blend of Grande Champagne, Borderies, and Fins Bois eaux-de-vie. Baron Otard XO received a 96 points rating by our tasting team.

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94 points: XO Francois Voyer Cognac Gold

We tasted Voyer Gold XO for the first time in 2010.  And in our independent taste test this is a worthy second place winner. ‘Gold’ is a pure Grande Champagne Cognac, a rich authentic delight from artisanal cognac producer, Francois Voyer. Voyer’s Gold XO offers excellent value for money and has received many awards. Discover Voyer Gold Cognac.

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93 points: Braastad XO Fine Champagne

This Braastad Cognac was not a regular resident of our cabinet until recently. It was only during last summer that our neighbor introduced us to this XO and we thought it was really well balanced, complex and rich. The blend consists of grapes from the Grande Champagne and Petite Champagne region of Cognac.

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91 points: Cordon Bleu Martell Cognac

Martell Cordon Bleu is an absolute classic. A very spicy, masculine XO Cognac – in a beautiful bottle. In our opinion the best Martell bottle and one of the best XOs out there. The Borderies eaux-de-vie in this Martell blend make the Cognac somewhat exotic: pepper-ish and complex. Discover Cordon Bleu

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90 points: De Luze XO Cognac

We’ve always liked this XO by De Luze. A Cognac that’s about 20 years old, and a typically mature Fine Champagne Cognac. This blend of Grande Champagne and Petite Champagne makes up a great Cognac with dark fruit and spices, and delicious first hints of rancio. And by the way, the bottle is really great too. An excellent all-round product that offers really good value for money. Discover De Luze XO.

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87 points: Hennessy XO Cognac

Hennessy XO is, of course, one of the best Cognacs out there. Hennessy has a long tradition of dominating the race for the highest quality sources of eaux-de-vie.  And the contracts it holds with top winegrowers and distillers guarantees first-class Cognac making. This Cognac is very round, no sharpness, and the spices are not too heavy. All in all, a very complete and balanced XO. Hennessy XO Cognac Extra Old comes in an iconic bottle: Both shape and quality of the decanter is exceptional.

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84 points: ABK6 XO Family Reserve Aged 10 Years

ABK6 XO Family Reserve is a Single Estate Extra Old Cognac from the Cognac producer, Domaines Abecassis, some 10 minutes away from our house in the region.  This Family Reserve was aged for more than 10 years in oak barrels.

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83 points: Louis Royer XO

A complex Cognac: masculine and rich with darker fruits. Royer’s XO is one of these very deeply mature Cognacs, with great hints of dark fruits – full of aromas with a long finish.

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81 points: Leopold Gourmel Age du Fruit 10 Carats

The Léopold Gourmel XO Age du Fruit 10 Carat Cognac is an old XO Fin Bois Cognac. At 41 % ABV, it matches well after white wines, after white meat or fish – or even complements Asian kitchen. The Age Du Fruit is produed without additives, aged in un-toasted French oak casks, is never chill filtered – and there are certainly no artifial wood notes or the addition of caramel.

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80 points: Drouet & Fils XO Ulysse Grande Champagne

Drouet XO Cognac is a bottle that somehow slipped into the tasting, we had not planned to include it. But it was a fortunate addition to the tasting… This Grande Champagne Cognac is a round, deep-bodied experience – the team liked it.

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