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LOUIS XIII Le Salmanazar A landmark creation and decanter at the peak of art is unique in its mastery, size and stature, the creation called for over 20 master crystal-craftsmen to handle the over 15 kilos of crystal. With skills drawing from this elite body of artisans and their combined expertise worked together through the blaze of the furnace to the calm atelier, each aspect from the dentelles to the fleur-de-lys stopper, all molded by the master crystal artists, choreographed and executed with finesse. To accomplish this great challenge, that only masters could create, LOUIS XIII turned to Baccarat, creators of the first LOUIS XIII decanter. With only one in existence, who will be the one to own this rare and awe-inspiring masterpiece? “Innovation is written in the legacy renowned for rising to the greatest challenges and utmost heights. Today LOUIS XIII creates a decanter so rare there is only…

The 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…

The year 2016 marks a time of transition for the Maison Hennessy as 7th generation Master Blender Yann Fillioux prepares to pass the keys to the cellar to his nephew, Renaud Fillioux de Gironde. Hennessy is proud to announce that 2016 marks the opening of an important new chapter in its 250-year history. Starting in February, Hennessy’s current Master Blender, Yann Fillioux, officially inducted his nephew, Renaud Fillioux de Gironde, a member of the 8th generation of the Fillioux family, as the next Master Blender at the Maison Hennessy. Under the mentorship of his uncle, Renaud Fillioux de Gironde will continue to hone his skills. A member of the tasting committee for the past 14 years, Renaud Fillioux de Gironde will succeed his uncle in due course, when Yann Fillioux steps down following a distinguished career as “guardian of the temple” at the Maison Hennessy. Major Milestone: Unbroken Dynasty Since…

The Hennessy Maison’s Master Blender, presents the Hennessy 250 Collector Blend [pullquote]“To mark milestone celebrations, Hennessy has always carefully created a special cognac to illustrate a sense of continuity. Today, the Maison celebrates 250 years of savoir-faire and excellence by creating a unique anniversary blend.” [/pullquote] Since 2010, Yann Fillioux, together with his Comité de Dégustation (Tasting Committee), has been selecting eaux de vie from amongst the ones he has carefully chosen and matured throughout his 50-year presence in the Maison. In order to prepare the Hennessy 250 Collector Blend, these eaux-de-vie were aged in 250 handmade, especially commissioned barrels of Limousin oak containing 250 litres each. Prior to that, they were aged in barrels for at least ten years under optimum conditions: temperate and oceanic, the epitome of controlled balance, of subtlety and “elegance”, to borrow one of Fillioux’s favourite terms. Commemorating their 250th anniversary, The Hennessy 250 Collector Blend pays full tribute to…

We were delighted to be invited to take part in ‘Les Journees Particulares,’ held by the LVMH Group at Hennessy HQ on the banks of the Charente River. June the 15th and 16th saw the cognac giant open its doors to reveal some of its innermost secrets to the public for the very first time.  And although we’ve visited Hennessy Cognac several times in the past, this time was extra special as it gave us the chance to explore three of their ‘secret places,’ which have never been exposed to the eyes of anyone other than staff and family before.  So it was with bubbling excitement that we prepared ourselves to visit The Grand Tasting Bureau, The Chai Founder and The Old Bottling Place. 10:00 hours saw us meeting Mr Jerome Ferry, the Internal Content Manager.  The day began with him briefing us about all the arrangements for the vista…