Audry XO Cognac

Highly Recommended 85 /100

see 20 reviews

Cognac age
XO
Growth area
Fine Champagne
Bottle size
700ml
ABV
40%

Taylor C.

Reviews written: 36 (see reviews)

Average Score given: 86

Review Overview: Best & Most rated, All Reviewers & Reviews

Bio:

French wine, and the concept of terroir, captured my interest early on. Naturally, curiosity took me to spirits, in particular Cognac. Today I'm proud to be a member of the Cognac Expert team managing B2B projects, working on Cognac Expert Originals, and writing bottle reviews for the English Blog. I love to taste anything and everything - rum/rhum, whisky(ey), Armagnac, etc. - but no other spirit grabs my attention quite like Cognac, and all of its subtleties and nuance. Santé !

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Audry XO Cognac

79 /100
Verified purchase

On first pour, I smell vanilla and A&W Vanilla Cream Soda - that’s not one I come across very often. With some time in the glass, the vanilla and cream remains present but is then joined by gingerbread, speculoos, and warm baking spices. I get the feeling the baking spice notes will transition to the actual flavors as well, but I doubt it will be a spicy cognac. So nothing prickly, tingly, or aggressive here; it seems far too well-behaved for that. As it opened up more and more, the rancio notes became apparent. I get this often with old Banyuls wines (try Domaine La Tour Vieille’s Vin de Meditation - it’s mind-blowing). The nose is calm, measured, and absolutely beautiful. I’d be content to just smell it all night.

In the mouth, we have a classy, refined, composed cognac. Dare I say that it is easy-going? Too easy-going? It shows its age, but it’s perfectly situated between youthful freshness and aged delicacy; it just rides the line between those two zones. The texture is velvety, quite creamy in fact, and the balance is remarkable. The flavors are of gingerbread, speculoos, comforting baking spices, and some fruits: raisins, dried cherry, and perhaps some plum. This is not a fruity cognac, though. It should be added that there is a tender sweetness to this cognac, but I won’t go so far as to say it is sweet. For wines with a touch of residual sugar, the term “tendre” can be applied. I think “tendre” works to describe this cognac’s sweet flavors.

I should also mention that smelling the empty glass was a treat itself. A milk chocolate, or tootsie roll, note came out. I thought of it as milk chocolate with a creamy streak in it.

If I had to dig deep for one little niggle, I’d say that I’d be curious to see what this cognac is like if it were a little more assertive in the mouth. Could bottling at 42 degrees or 43 degrees alcohol give this cognac a touch more drive? I should be careful what I wish for, though, as doing so could throw off its already perfect balance.

Lastly, this is great gateway Cognac due to its all around easy access. Anyone can get into Cognac fast with this one, but he or she will outgrow it quite soon. To be sure, this is good stuff, but if you're already well along in your Cognac journey I look into more characterful Cognacs.

Tags

  • Candied Fruit
  • Chocolate
  • Gingerbread
  • Plum
  • Raisin
  • Rancio
  • Spices
  • Vanilla

Flavour

Wood 6/10

Spice 6/10

Fruit 5/10

Flower 3/10

Bottle / Package Design 3/5

Where is the Love? Ordinary Nice Beautiful A sight to be seen!

Value for Money 3/5

Overpriced Low Average Bargain Steal

Tasting

Nose

What aromas do you get when you sniff the Cognac? Do you get hints of fruits or flowers - perhaps it's sweet? Is it intense or rather flat - and most importantly, is the nose coherent to taste and finish? The nose is the most important part when tasting Cognac.

20/25

Mouth

A small sip: Allow your taste buds in the various areas of your mouth to distinguish the different flavours. This part of cognac tasting is described as ‘the palate’. Don’t just swallow it down; allow the liquid to touch all the regions of the mouth. Doing this is necessary as the taste buds pick up contrasting flavours in the different areas of the mouth; on the tip of your tongue to the sides, for example. Take a tiny sip to prep your palate for the sensory experience to come. Take a second larger sip, and gently roll the cognac around, etting it come into contact with every corner of your mouth. Focus on the perceived textural sensations. Are the sensations round and rich or fresh and elegant? Is the overall mouthfeel intense, balanced, disjointed, or lacking presence? In short, how does the cognac feel in your mouth?

15/20

Taste

Quite simply, what do you taste as you gently roll the cognac around in your mouth? Pay close attention to any flavors of fruits, flowers, oak, and spices - or a complex combination of those elements. Are the flavors cohesive with the Nose and the Mouth, giving a sense of balance and complexity?

21/25

Finish

The ‘finish’ is the experience you get after you’ve swallowed the cognac. What flavours can you detect? Is it a flat or rough finish and rather sharp, or is it a slight 'punch' you like? How long does the finish last? Also think about overall balance: How does the finish compare to nose and taste?

15/20

Overall Impression

Consider the Nose, Mouth, Taste, and Finish simultaneously - the cognac as a whole. Is there cohesion between the four categories, or does the cognac shine in some areas and appear dull in others? Quite simply, is the memory from the tasting experience one that will last your lifetime; is the memory good but nothing extraordinary; or is the cognac’s impact entirely forgettable?

8/10

Total: 79/100

  • 80-84: Recommended
  • 85-89: Highly Recommended
  • 90-95: Exceptional
  • 96-100: Superlative
Flat Acceptable Fine Excellent Ethereal Thin & weak Disjointed Balanced Exquisite Bland Ordinary Good Excellent Spectacular Non-existent, or rough Acceptable Good Memorable Endless Uninspiring, or rough Ordinary Good Excellent Memorable
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