In 2014 I visited several cognac houses, and had the pleasure to spend several hours with Benedicte Hardy of Cognac Hardy in their aging and blending facilities. We got really nerdy with specifics on aging cognac. But first, some background. Hardy specializes in luxury cognacs, and in general is blended in an "approachable" and "feminine" style. It's a very large operation, with 20,000 barrels aging at their warehouses valued at more than 50 million dollars worth of booze. It was Benedicte's father who made the company famous in recent years putting the emphasis on luxury. She herself has a law...
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The Merlet family has been distilling in France for 5 generations, but have only launched their own brand of cognac in recent years. They have a really interesting history that I learned on a visit to their chateau, vineyards, and distillery in 2014.
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Camper English is a cocktails and spirits writer for publications including Saveur, Details.com, Whisky Advocate, PopSci.com, Drinks International, and many more. Learn about Camper and Alcademics, or read clips of his published work.