Mandarine Napoleon XO Gold: $2,200 Cognac liqueur
A 125-year-old anniversary (or, to give it its proper name, a quasquicentennial) is worth celebrating. If you ask us though, the latest limited edition offering by Mandarine Napoleon would probably not have been our first choice to celebrate…
Sadly, the producer doesn’t have professional product shots of the bottle or the box. They were very friendly when we asked them to send us images, this is the only one they had, which is a little bit surprising for a brand that is launching a 2200 Dollar product.
De Kuper Royal Distillers in the Netherlands released a bling-bling edition of its orange-based liqueur that allegedly was a particular favorite of Napoleon Bonaparte himself. The story goes like this: The blend was created for Monsieur NB, and made from a secret blend of herbs, spices, and mandarin orange peel. After becoming much beloved by Napoleon, it was made commercially available to the ‘little people’ in the year 1892.
Why such a huge Price Tag?
The Mandarine Napoleon XO Gold has been a year in the planning, and is to go on sale for a rather high €1892 (that’s approx. $2,200).
Apparently it contains Cognac from the year 1892, and from Grande Champagne Cognac, no less. Unfortunately the amount and detail of information is a little bit disappointing for our standards. Now we don’t know how much Cognac is in the mix, but according to the sales pitch, it’s a ‘substantial amount’. Take from that what you will. Needless to say that it is not a Cognac (because Cognac follows very strict rules, and a liqueur may be based on Cognac but can’t be “a Cognac” when it’s mixed with other ingredients).
A 24 carat decanter
Then there’s the bottle. It’s been gilded in its entirety with 24 carat gold by hand. The Dutch gilding specialist, Goudverf, were responsible for this, and the process was carried out by hand and takes around 2 weeks for a single bottle. So precious is this gilding that each bottle is supplied complete with it’s own gloves, allowing you to handle the bottle without damaging the gilding. It comes presented in a bespoke American walnut wooden box made by Kramer Interiors.
Yes, the Cognac market is a luxury market, and yes, you can probably always find someone who will buy a gilded bottle as a collector’s item. But should the world really churn out more luxury goods, or should the focus rather be on excellent quality from, let’s say, humble farmers who have amassed decades of knowledge? We support small artisanal producers, and we love simplicity and the best possible quality. This bottle seems better suited to house the Genie in One Thousand and One Nights.
If you’re intrigued nonetheless and would like to get your hands on a bottle of Napoleon Mandarine XO, don’t hesitate to get in touch with the company directly – firstname.lastname@example.org. Good luck!