Delamain XO Pale and Dry Cognac

Recommended 81 /100

see 6 reviews

Cognac age
Growth area
Grande Champagne
Bottle size

Dimitre I.

Reviews written: 25 (see reviews)

Average Score given: 81

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


Based in San Francisco, CA, I grew up on a vineyard in Europe. I am avid wine, and scotch enthusiast, and I have been exploring Cognacs and Armagnacs as a newly found passion.

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Delamain Pale & Dry XO is unparallel value in the overpriced XO market

Exceptional 95 /100

Delamain Pale & Dry XO is unparallel value in the often, overpriced XO market. This is the quintessential British cognac, designed in 1920 for the British market. Pale and dry, just like I like my spirits. Very complex cognac.
Nose: soft and elegant. Vanilla and poached pairs and red apples. Rose petals and orange blossom. Nose is floral and herbal. Chamomile and light spices in the background. Delicate, but not week.
Palate: good mouthfeel, medium viscosity and good acidity. Zero alcohol burn. Vanilla and apricots. The nose is floral, and the palate becomes more fruity and drier. Sweetness is balanced by minerality and spices. Prominent rancio flavor, result of 25 years aging.
Finish: long. Dry minerality. Vanilla rancio, light oak.
Overall: Delamain Pale & Dry XO is exceptional. Outstanding value at $100 for 100% Gran Champagne grapes, no sugar added, 25-year-old cognac. Very different style of cognac. None of the heavy oak. The neutral oak used, complements the newmake spirit, without overpouring it. This cognac, drinks like a Speyside scotch: dry and floral. The best Gran Champagne has to offer and at an unbeatable price. A must buy IMO.

Bottle / Package Design 4/5

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

Value for Money 5/5

Overpriced Low Average Bargain Steal



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.



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?



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?



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?


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?


Total: 95/100

  • 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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