Antoine Hardy put this Cognac up in 1863, and three generations of the Hardy family allowed it to age in barrel until the 1960s, and didn’t offer it for sale until the 1980s. When it was finally released, the world’s oldest unblended Cognac, made entirely from pre-phylloxera grapes, was the first of the ultra-premiere spirits. Its like will never be seen again, for even if a Cognac house decided, today, to put its finest eaux-de-vie up for a hundred years, it would come, not from original european vines, but from vines on american root stock. This is, truly history in a bottle. And oh, what a bottle. The “Lumiére” crystal decanter, by Daum, is a thing of elegance and beauty. On the nose, caramel, cocoa, and espresso lead, with a lightly spicy background. Caramel, coffee, fresh pears, dried citrus peel, white flowers, and peppery spice dance with each other on the palate. This is shockingly fresh for a 150 year old spirit, fruity, lively, and spicy, with a feminine and elegant finish that lingers forever. It is hard to imagine a more beautiful spirit. It is well-named, indeed. Very Highly Recommended. 100 points.


WHO: Maison Hardy
WHAT: Cognac
WHERE:  France, Cognac,
HOW MUCH: $8,000



About The Author

David Honig

David Honig, the Publisher, looked at what was happening in the world of wine journalism and realized there were a lot of great writers out there at the same time paying publications, from newspapers to websites, were dropping like flies. So he created Palate Press to find the best writers and create a new forum for them to sell their best work. He is a self-educated oenophile, and defers to the tremendous experience and wisdom of the amazing staff at PALATE PRESS: The Online Wine Magazine.

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