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Cognac Expert x Wagemut

Exclusive Release

Wagemut x Cognac Expert

An experiment that dares to merge both the Rum and Cognac worlds, Wagemut Rum is the product of Cognac Expert’s Sophie & Max and Germany-based rum producer Nicolas Kroeger. Giving a high-quality 12-year-old rum a fresh and modern twist, we are proud to present Cognac Expert X Wagemut Rum, finished in Cognac oak casks for 3 months before ending its maturation process for a further 3 months in the Limousin casks of Pineau des Charentes.

Discover the full story of Wagemut rum as Max reveals an inside scoop on this exclusive collaboration and how it came to be below.

Age: 12 years old Rum (in Cognac age that's an XO!) 

Finished for 3 months in Cognac barrels and a further 3 months in Pineau des Charentes barrels.

Distilled in: Barbados 

ABV: 43.6 %

Bottle: 700 ml

Tasting Notes

Eye: Gold. Coating the glass' walls allows an eye-intriguing dispersal of medium-paced legs to run down the glass.

Nose: Bright. Herbal, grassy traces (not unlike those in some rhum agricole from Guadeloupe, for example). Little dried red berries. Cake with icing. Crushed strawberry. Stewed rhubarb. An inviting nose with only a few of the classic Barbados rum markers. The pineau finish is the more impactful.

Palate + finish: Good mouthfeel - coats the palate. Gourmand and dessert-y on one hand, bright and grassy on the other hand. Fresh. Good acidity. The alcohol level is really well measured. Anise. Stewed rhubarb. Cake: financier aux fraises. Definitely a rum but not an obvious Foursquare Barbados rum. Finish is medium.

Really a pleasant trio of smell, taste, and mouthfeel. Easy and fun to taste.

$ 100 $ 89
excl. TAX excl. shipping
Time left

The story of our Cognac-Pineau finished Rum

Max: “Sometime last year (in 2021), I sat down with Nicolas Kroeger, who can only be known as somewhat of a rum wizard. I’d heard that he has some crazy rum business going on in northern Germany and was curious to learn more about his projects.

We quickly decided we wanted to do something together and toyed with the idea of finishing off a good-quality rum in Cognac and Pineau des Charentes barrels. A brave and daring idea, as it’s something that, to the best of my knowledge, has never been done before, our proposed experiment fitted perfectly with the identity of Nicolas’ brand: Wagemut – which in English means “dare to be brave”.

And our idea found its place perfectly in everything that myself and Cognac Expert represent, as it introduces rum to the culture of Charente and the Cognac region.”

Dare to be Brave

A Treasure Hunt in Charente - Life on our estate

“To start, we decided to select a rum from one of the best distilleries in Barbados, going for a rum from 12-year-old barrels that would then be finished in the Wagemut cellars in Germany.

Next, we needed to scope out some old French oak Cognac barrels that we could take to Germany to complete the final stages of our experiment. So we invited Nicolas over to our estate Logis de Beaulieu the Cognac region, where we introduced him to the culture and lifestyle of Charente.

What a coincidence, during Nico's visit we had a bunch of friends visiting at our estate, some of them were working on a Charente-inspired cookbook. So there was lots of culture, lots of degustation and dining. 

We went on a treasure hunt of the Charente region.

Nico and I visited some small Cognac producers, winemakers, distillers, hidden cellars and of course – trying lots of different Charente-based produce, mainly Cognac, Pineau des Charentes alongside an array of food pairings and culinary wonders. 

Along the way, we looked for barrels that we could use for aging; of course, when looking for barrels, we came across some interesting Cognacs, too, some of which I've been able to use for other projects. Eventually, we found some high-quality barrels at the distillery Moisans – a bigger Cognac producer; therefore, we took advantage of the fact that the quality was high.

After trying several Pineau des Charentes, an often forgotten Charente-based fortified wine (beyond the confines of Charente) that we both love to enjoy – Nicolas came up with the idea to add a final stage of the finishing process by aging the rum in a Pineau des Charentes cask.”

What is Pineau des Charentes?

A strong part of the local Charente culture, like Cognac, Pineau des Charentes is enjoyed widely across the Cognac region. Nevertheless, it is a delicious wine-based spirit usually appreciated as an aperitif as it has many great food pairings.

With white, rose and red Pineau des Charentes available, it is made with different grape varieties and combines fresh grapes with fresh eaux-de-vie before being aged in French oak barrels until the cellar master deems it ready for bottling.

From Cognac to Germany

“Having sourced our casks, we shipped 3 old Cognac barrels and 3 Pineau des Charentes barrels from the Cognac region to Germany, where the rum was then aged for 3 months in the Cognac casks and then a further 3 months in the Pineau des Charentes casks down in the Wagemut cellars.

Over the following 6 months, I visited Nico's cellar to taste it for the very first time. I was really amazed by the instant wow factor I got when tasting the rum – at first, it is clear that the nose and the body are obviously of a rum, but it soon reminds you of Cognac. It actually felt as though I was working in a Cognac cellar back in Charente.

Upon sipping the rum, I soon got the fruit and the red berry aromas of the grape – pretty remarkable. The final product? A 43% rum that, in my view, is totally accessible to a wide variety of spirits drinkers, yet it still packs a level of complexity that suits connoisseurs. A unique hybrid spirit. Sure it’s not for everyone, but it's well worth trying if you like to experiment with spirits. Likewise, Cognac lovers, and those fond of Pineau des Charentes and rum, in general, are in for a treat.”

The Art of Experimentation

“Representing how both Nicolas and I like to work, Cognac Expert X Wagemut Rum is the product of our passion for doing experiments and uncovering different corners of the spirits world as we go. I really enjoyed showing Nicolas around Charente, and his enthusiasm, while we ventured around Charente together will remain close to me in future projects.

By merging the world of rum with the often traditional practices of Cognac making, I found this collaboration really inspiring and appreciated how truly amazed Nicolas was when meeting Cognac producers and exploring the cellars of Charente. The Wagemut Cognac Expert rum is the product of our journey and of a rum wizard visiting the Cognac region and taking what he found back to his cellar.

The outcome: extraordinary.”

Cognac Expert x Wagemut Rum

Age: 12 years old Rum (in Cognac age that's an XO!) 

Finished for 3 months in Cognac barrels and a further 3 months in Pineau des Charentes barrels.

Distilled in: Barbados 

ABV: 43.6 %

Bottle: 700 ml

$ 100 $ 89
excl. TAX excl. shipping
Time left

Tasting Notes

Eye: Gold. Coating the glass' walls allows an eye-intriguing dispersal of medium-paced legs to run down the glass.

Nose: Bright. Herbal, grassy traces (not unlike those in some rhum agricole from Guadeloupe, for example). Little dried red berries. Cake with icing. Crushed strawberry. Stewed rhubarb. An inviting nose with only a few of the classic Barbados rum markers. The pineau finish is the more impactful.

Palate + finish: Good mouthfeel - coats the palate. Gourmand and dessert-y on one hand, bright and grassy on the other hand. Fresh. Good acidity. The alcohol level is really well measured. Anise. Stewed rhubarb. Cake: financier aux fraises. Definitely a rum but not an obvious Foursquare Barbados rum. Finish is medium.

Really a pleasant trio of smell, taste, and mouthfeel. Easy and fun to taste.

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