The Classicist: Delamain Cognac
At $7,000, the Le Voyage is almost too precious to drink. However, the company is coming out with a new Trio Pack of three 200 ml bottles of Grande Champagne cognacs in time for the holidays, which at $129 is a more accessible entry point to this fine house whose history dates back all the way to 1759.
The three Trio Pack offerings are their Pale & Dry XO (right), Vesper, and Tres Venerable. Pale & Dry is exactly what it sounds like, with a bright amber color; Vesper is the next oldest with a richer hue; and Tres Venerable is a blend of extremely old Grande Champagne cognacs that have "benefited from maximum barrel aging and express all the nobility of the truly great eaux-de-vie."
Gallery: Delamain Cognac
Delamain is situated in Jarnac, a region long associated with the finest cognac production. All their preparatory operations are carried out by hand, and Delamain cognacs are made from only the finest growth of the Grande Champagne region's micro-terroirs; and are aged only in old, 350-litre local French oak barrels in the family's cellars on the banks of the Charente river. In addition to the Le Voyage and Trio Pack cognacs, their offerings include Extra de Grande Champagne, Vintage Millesimes, and the single estate Reserve de la Famille, which until recently was (as the name implies) reserved strictly for members of the Delamain family.
"The Delamain family has been committed to producing the finest cognacs for more than 250 years," notes Charles Braastad, Delamain's Managing Director and a direct descendant of its founders. "Releasing these irreplaceable blends represents our continued interest in sharing only the rarest and most authentic eaux-de-vie with the elegant collector." The Delamains know wherof they speak; in 1935, Robert Delamain authored The History of Cognac, a highly-regarded reference book to this day. See the gallery for more.