This XO Cognac by Hennessy is a blend of more than a hundred different eaux-de-vie (!). Those eaux-de-vie of the Hennessy XO are between 10 to 70 years old. Hennessy XO is of course a safe choice – Hennessy Cognac is the biggest Cognac trading house in the world and they know what they are doing.
This XO used to be a Reserve de Famille, exclusively available to the Hennessy family, later on found its international markets.
Tasting notes of the Hennessy XO Cognac:
The color: deep ocher
On the nose: ripe fruit, a hint of spices, mellow wood tones and a nice alcoholic ‘green’ note
The taste: soft fruit, toasted wood, balanced, elegant and robust, some cinnamon
The finish: intense taste, remains pretty long
The origin: Hennessy is known for buying eaux-de-vie from all the Cognac region. So it will probably be a blend of the Grande Champagne, Petite Champagne, Fins Bois, Borderies…
The age: The average age of the eaux-de-vie is 45 years
The Price of this XO Cognac is about $100 – $140 (it’s true it is a good Cognac, but still: some people consider the XO as over-priced, but it really all depends on your taste)
If one wanted to compare it to Rémy Martin XO, the Hennessy remains a bit more agressive and slightly less smooth than the Remy. But still, this XO is mellow as a XO can be – having it slightly more sharp is a choice: The Hennessy XO Cognac is more masculine than other XOs. Maurice Hennessy developed the XO blend in 1870 for the Cognac house.
Hennessy XO could be called be a “beginner” XO. It’s not a value judgement but more a way of saying that it’s fruity style, blended to retain considerable grappa-like aromas. I personally prefer Martell XO or Martell Cordon Bleu which is also a high-end Cognac (and $40 – $50 less expensive).
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