The dram behind door number 1 of the Drinks by the Dram Cognac Advent Calendar is the Courvoisier VSOP Exclusif Cognac bottled at 40% and made out of combined spirits from different crus in the Cognac region. I am new at cognacs and what the general flavours are in them to be honest and so this calendar gives me a good challenge to broaden my horizon between now and Christmas.
On the nose I am getting notes of vanilla, red apple, apricots, cinnamon, cookie dough, all spice, caramel, ginger, oak and nuts. On the palate I am getting these same notes in a soft, sweet and creamy mix added with some mixed forrest fruits to add even an extra layer of fruit sweetness. The finish is not too long but it is honey and vanilla sweet, with a hint of raisins and dark chocolate showing. A nice cognac and easy drinking. To educate myself further I have looked up some information in this Cognac house, you can find this below. Thanks for sharing this Drinks by the Dram!
Courvoisier remains the only Cognac house to control the entire process from grape to glass. Nurturing close relationships with over 800 vine growers ensures the grapes used are the finest in the Cognac region. Crafted from 200-year-old oak trees individually selected by the Master Blender, barrels are handmade to exact specifications by a team of skilled coopers.
Cognac can only be produced from Colombard, Folle Blanche or Ugni Blanc grapes and there are six legally recognised “crus” or areas in the Cognac region where these grapes may be grown—each selected for its perfect combination of clay, chalk, lime and flint stones, rainfall and glorious sunshine. Courvoisier mainly works, though, with the four finest crus: Grande Champagne, Petite Champagne, Borderies and Fins Bois.
The grapes are harvested at their peak, at the end of the summer. Once pressed by the vine growers, the juices are allowed to naturally ferment over seven days, transforming the grape sugars into wine. This wine is double distilled in an intense process unique to cognac. Distillation takes place 24 hours a day from November to March only. To ensure the finest quality, only traditional and unusually small 25 hectolitre alambic pot stills are used.
Courvoisier is one of the few cognac houses to distill “on the lees,” a specific technique which requires keeping the yeast residue. The final product is separated into three parts: the head, the heart and the tails. Only the clear and pure liquid from the heart is used to craft Courvoisier. This distilled spirit or “eau-de-vie” is ready for ageing.
The eaux-de-vies are aged in barrels handcrafted from French oak. Once the oak staves are cut, the wood is dried naturally for three years by the master coopers. Once the barrels are completed, they are filled with the eaux-de-vie and the ageing process begins. All cognac must be aged for a minimum of two and a half years, growing increasingly more complex and smooth the older it gets.