One of our readers has sent us a story, and pictures of her vintage cognac Otard Dupuy.

(If you also have a bottle you would like to submit, send us photos and information: Use this form)

Pictured is an old bottle of cognac I have had in my possession since 1978.

Now, I get to tell a great story: A group of my friends and I had the opportunity to spend the night in an old Spring Lake, NJ mansion that was being renovated. One of the workers had the key and we all snuck in and had a little party. Late in the evening, the worker invited us all into the basement where they had been inspecting the foundation in preparation for the demolition of a wing.

Old Vintage Otard

Along one wall was a cabinet they found hiding a vault door measuring 3′ wide by 6′ tall with a combination lock. They’d smashed the lock in, pulled the bolt, and pryed the door open to find a room 6′ wide by 7′ tall by 8′ deep.

On either side wooden shelves had long fallen away and dumped approximately 200 bottles of applejack into a pile on the floor. The contents of every bottle was in some state of evaporation, if not smashed. There were no labels.

Otard Dupuy

Sitting on top of this pile were two cases of cognac. The contractor had taken one case and the worker took the other. He gave me two bottles.
At that age, I knew nothing – period. I opened the bottle with the intact labels and kept the one you see. The one with the intact labels had a lable across the back with printing on it, but the only thing that was clear was, “May, 1900.” An unfortunate circumstance led to that bottle being smashed, but I have kept this bottle since then. It has always been kept on its side at room temperature.

My wife refused to drink it with me at the melinnium; she refused to drink it with me on May 1, 2000. I don’t know what she’s waiting for…
That is my story. I welcome all responses.

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Max is a spirits expert and speaker, into marketing, technology, startups, and business development. He’s also a farmer. He likes tools and machines, Game of Thrones, and Better Call Saul. Included in his Top 10 Cognacs are the Audry XO and Bache Gabrielsen 1973.Max founded Cognac Expert in 2010 at his family’s estate in Poullignac, in the Cognac region, France. Started as a blog, today Cognac Expert is the world’s largest website about all things Cognac, a blog, and a specialized online shop featuring 800+ different Cognac bottles.


  1. Avatar

    why wait? drink it now!!!!!! who cares if it’s 8am in the morning or 3am after a big night out, drink it! let us know what it taste like (we can only imagine)

  2. Avatar
    Alain Royer

    The Old Dupuy bottle. Often such bottles contain cognacs which are very but very different than those we are used to taste nowadays. Production rules were different than the ones implemented by to day’s AOC. Taste, aromas and textures were different and that’s it. Many cognacs of the 19th century are now very much madeira style, just think how Madeira is produced and aged and bridge the culture. It is quite fascinating.

  3. Avatar

    If you’r wife is not going to drink it with you i will, or if you would like to sale it i would buy it from you e-mail at [email protected] (Comment by Admin: Dear James, please make your offer here in this post, rather than posting your email address. Thank you for your understanding)
    Kind regards, James

  4. Avatar

    Great story, really enjoyed it!!
    Does this bottle still excist today, unopened??
    If so, please store it in an upright possition. Only wine should be laying down.
    Keep it at even temperature, preferred below room temperature, without direct sunlight. And call me when You are gonna open it, ha ha.
    I’m really curious about the name combinding the two names Otard and Dupuy.
    The House of Dupuy that I know later became the House of Bache-Gabrielsen from Norway……
    So many questions!! Would love to hear from You.
    Sincerely Olaf. Norway.

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