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Bonjour mon amour: Tasting Camus, Courvoisier, Hine, Principe and Duque de Alba

By Miguel in Tasting , Featured , Courvoisier , Hennessy , Camus

WTF! Cognac?! In a whisky blog?! Yeah. I have tasted just a few cognacs and really I didn’t enjoyed the experience, so I have decided that it is time to taste a few more of them. Perhaps I am lucky and find a new passion to write about. With even more luck I taste a nice cognac.

No, seriously. I have tasted Courvoisier and I am really not fond of it at all. Perhaps it is the Chivas Regal of Scotch whisky. It is present everywhere, everyone knows about it, it has deluxe written in every possible spelling in the label and it is a poor dram.

I have just introduced my hand in the “other beverages” box and have take out seven bottles: five cognacs and two spanish brandies.

The Cognacs

Just a bit of everything, three Camus cognacs, one Courvoisier and one Hennessy.

Camus VS

“Very nice cognac from Camus. Better than Courvoisier if you want my opinion”

85
Camus VS
Camus VS Elegance has a style all of its own, with a nose that is charmingly floral, and a fruity palate with hints of pepper and surprising richness in the gentle oak and vanilla finish.

This dram has a amber-like color.

Nose (85): average. floral, sweet, citrus, lemon zest, grapes.

Palate (85): smooth. lemon zest, spices, wood, grapes, pepper.

Finish (85): short. honey, lemon zest, cinnamon.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Camus VS with 85 points over 100.

Camus Celebration

“Nose is quite simple and plan but overall it is a decent cognac ”

85
Camus Celebration
Since 1863, four generations of the Camus Family have dedicated their efforts towards the production of fine Cognac.

Composed of the finest and most rare Brandies produced in the delimited area of Cognac as specified in the decree of 1909, Celebration represents the highest criterion of quality.
This precious bottle, of which we guarantee the outstanding quality, marks the celebration of the centenary of our firm.

This dram has a cooper-like color.

Nose (83): average. lemon zest, citrus, grapes, spices. Light nose

Palate (87): powerful, oily. honey, wood, lemon zest, citrus, grapes, cinnamon.

Finish (86): short. honey, lemon.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Camus Celebration with 85 points over 100.

Camus Josephine

“Most interesting taste on this Camus Cognac. Why can I only find the miniature?”

86
Camus Josephine Cognac
A beautifully-presented half-bottle of Camus Josephine - a cognac designed by this famous producer specifically to appeal to feminine tastes.

This dram has a cooper-like color.

Nose (86): more than average. nuts, citrus, lemon zest, grapes. Smells more like a Jerez brandy than a cognac. And that's a good thing for me.

Palate (88): powerful. nuts, lemon, citrus, spices, pepper, cinnamon, floral. Interesting.

Finish (85): average. honey, nuts.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Camus Josephine Cognac with 86 points over 100.

Courvisier Exclusif

“Nice cognac from Courvoisier with interesting notes but not bold enough. I prefer Camus but don't tell anyone”

85
Courvoisier Exclusif VSOP
Still built upon the great heritage of the Courvoisier brand, VSOP Exclusif has a younger, more contemporary feel. The light smooth blend within a smart distinctive bottle is an elegant product for those who want to make a difference.

This dram has a cooper-like color.

Nose (85): more than average. lemon zest, spices, floral, grapes, nuts.

Palate (85): light. lemon zest, citrus, spices, pepper, cinnamon, liquorice.

Finish (86): average. chocolate, lemon zest.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Courvoisier Exclusif VSOP with 85 points over 100.

Buy this bottle at

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Hennessy Fine De Cognac

“Lots of sugar inside this one, but it works well on the beverage”

86
Hennessy Fine de Cognac
A VSOP style blend of around sixty eaux-de-vie aged between four and ten years, this is a stylish cognac equally at home in a quality cocktail or as a digestif. Excellent value for money.

This dram has a cooper-like color.

Nose (87): average. sweet, lemon zest, citrus, spices, ginger. Very interesting

Palate (86): powerful. lemon zest, caramel, spices, floral, grapes, pepper. Tastes very much like a rum.

Finish (86): longer than average. honey, burnt sugar, lemon zest.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Hennessy Fine de Cognac with 86 points over 100.

Buy this bottle at

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The Brandies

Just tasting two brandies from Spain: one from Jerez and the other from Malaga. It is a real pity that being so near Jerez I have tasted so little brandies. There is so very little drinking culture here in Spain…
Most bodegas create brandies and most of them seems to forget about promoting the stuff. With only Gonzalez Byass doing something decent about marketing.

Principe Brandy

“So near greatness! This brandy has lots of character and a delicious sweet sherry aroma”

87
Principe Brandy Reserva Especial
Amber color. Aroma of wood, with notes of pastry. In the mouth, sweet tones, slightly hot.

This dram has a mahogany-like color.

Nose (86): more than average. lemon zest, raisins, burnt sugar, spices.

Palate (87): powerful. nuts, fruits, cocoa, raisins, oloroso, lemon zest.

Finish (87): longer than average. nuts, cocoa.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Principe Brandy Reserva Especial with 87 points over 100.

Gran Duque de Alba Brandy

Sometimes shit happens. This is one of those times. My mini is filled just a 1/3 of its original capacity… maybe I am still lucky.
The cork looks corrupted and broken. I manage to get it out in a single piece. I pour all of what it is left in the miniature and nose… no nose, no alcohol punch, nothing.
I am getting scared. I have paid a few pounds for the miniature, it is not a huge lose… still… I decide to risk and taste it. Uaagghhg! Just dark water. If there were brandy inside this bottle is was long ago lost.

A pity! I have read that this one was really nice.

Miguel says…

I enjoyed this tasting: nothing to expect and seven drams to discover.

The cognacs are really nice, particulary fond of Camus VS and Josephine that seems like matured in a sherry cask.

Also I am also very surprised with Principe, a brandy that the bottle of 1 litre is worth €9 and that is surprisingly interesting. Like an old sweet oloroso sherry wine. It is very nice brandy with just a small step down of greatness.



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