The World’s Most Expensive Cognac Hits the Market

Cognac is an international drink of class and substance, one that first class people swear by and cognac is the standard bearer of a formal occassion.

Cognac is a type of brandy which comes from the Cognac region of France. It is rightfully famous, requiring a lengthy distillation and aging process that yields a very distinctive spirit. Much like champagne, in Europe cognac is protected by an origin appellation, which means that only brandy produced in the specific region of France from certain grapes in a certain way may be labeled with this name. This protects the integrity of this often-imitated spirit, and provides some protection to European buyers who might be confused.

The world’s most expensive cognac has hit the market. A bottle of Croizet Cuvée Léonie which predates both the French wine blight and the American Civil War. Being one of the handful of these bottles, the 1858 vintage will be available at New York’s Financial District Wine & Liquor in July of this year for $157,000.

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Another bottle from the same batch broke the price record for cognac sold at auction when Hong Kong’s Maggie Vong bid 1 million yuan (roughly $156,760) in 2011.  Its price validates itself due to the cognac’s history; apparently, Winston Churchill and General Eisenhower plotted the Allies to victory during WWII over a bottle of Cuvee Leonie from the same year. Here’s President Gennady Agrest discussing the business of cognac on Bloomberg:


But if, $157 000 is a bit out of your price range, here are some quality Cognac premium options you can enjoy for less:

Hennessy XO Cognac
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Medium amber colour; orange rind, butterscotch/caramel, dried fruit aromas with hints of vanilla and plums; rich, smooth and flavourful on the palate; long finish.

Price: $250 at LCBO.

De Luze XO Fine Champagne Cognac
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Fine Champagne with the intensity of the dried fruit and it’s complex spiciness can be explored with a sample of walnuts, dried apricots and prunes. Richness of dried fruits on the palate, length in mouth is about 10 minutes.

Price: $156 at LCBO

Rémy Martin XO Excellence Cognac

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Golden amber colour; complex floral, exotic woods and spicy fruit combine in an intense nose; full flavour and very smooth

Price: $228 at LCBO

Camus Elegance XO
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Deep copper color. Attractive aromas of spiced melon, caramel apple, cola nut, polished wood, and raisin scone aromas with a broad, supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-full body and a richly concentrated chocolate, spice, pipe tobacco and mineral dust nuanced finish. A superb sipping Cognac with excellent depth. Exceptional.

Price: $207 at LCBO


“Each year, Cognac makes its mark with enthusiasm, style and confidence and it’s wonderful to be taking part in this year’s edition.” ~ Jonathan Demme



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1 Comment

  • Reply May 21, 2013

    Ryan Emond

    Just follow this handy guide to understand Cognac grades:

    A.C.: Two years old. Aged in wood

    V.O., Very Old: Aged a minimum of four years

    V.S., Very Special: Three years of aging in wooden casks. Very often called Three Star

    V.S.O.P., Very Superior Old Pale: Minimum aging is eight years in wood for the youngest in the blend. Industry average is between 10 and 15 years old, which is why it’s sometimes known as Five Star

    X.O., Extra Old: Also called Luxury. Has a minimum age of eight years. This class also can include Napoleon and Vielle (“Reserve”)

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