Martell XO Named Best Cognac

Ultimate Spirits Challenge - Cognac


18 cognacs were tasted for this week's UBC episode, with only five being selected as finalists and just one placing as the Chairman's Trophy Winner. Of those tasted, Martell XO Cognac from France garnered the top spot, with 96 points and an extraordinary review. Read on for the complete results and cognac tasting notes.

For more competition results, check our our full series of coverage. To learn more about the Ultimate Beverage Challenge, see the competition website.

Photo courtesy Sergey Melkonov via Flickr/CC

Chairman's Trophy: Martell XO Cognac France, 96pts

"Harmoniously balanced with a silky texture that provides the perfect backdrop for lush fruit notes, cinnamon, allspice, toffee, and toasted oak. The sweet caramel and fruit flavors are checked by hints of black pepper on the finish. Lovely." - Sean Ludford, USC Assistant Chairman

Delamain Extra Cognac Grande Champagne France, 95pts

"The aromatics are rich and luxurious with scents of toffee, caramel, baked fruits, smoked meats, cloves, dried bananas, and oak. A rare masterpiece." - Sean Ludford, USC Assistant Chairman

Delamain Pale & Dry XO Cognac Grande Champagne France, 95pts

"Beautifully floral with loads of dried black fruits, brown spices, marzipan, toffee, maple syrup, and butterscotch. Absolutely seamless and perfectly balanced." - Sean Ludford, USC Assistant Chairman

Cognac Grosperrin XO Cognac Fine Champagne France, 94pts

"Round, supple fragrances of dried violets, baked pears, raisins and vanilla highlight this bouquet; flavors include dates, toffee and cocoa; long, elegant aftertaste." - Paul Pacult, USC Judging Chairman

Frapin Chateau Fontpinot XO Cognac Grande Champagne France, 94pts

"A tremendously elegant style that does not reveal all it has a first nosing and sip but the patient Cognac lover will be rewarded with deep dry, caramel and butterscotch notes that envelop the beautiful baked apple core. Lovely." - Sean Ludford, USC Assistant Chairman

Landy VSOP Cognac France, 94pts

"A beautiful and classic style that perfectly weaves notes of rich fruits, cocoa, toffee, butterscotch, and sweet oak. Wonderfully textured with great length and balance." - Sean Ludford. USC Assistant Chairman

For Complete Results Visit:

Ultimate Spirits Challenge Results

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  • Snooth User: ssande1
    575608 0

    Commenting on the egg nog recipe: the raw eggs are a bad idea in this listeria laden time. Try using the first part of a good ice cream recipe where you heat up the 12 egg yokes (yokes only,no white ), part of the cream, and sugar over med. high heat while quickly whisking. then add the rest of the cream and alcohol to taste. this will actually improve the recipe while making it safe to consume. for added decadence- add a couple of scoops of Haagen Daz ice cream- unbelievably delicious.

    Nov 17, 2011 at 5:02 PM

  • Yea to the ice cream! I was taught to make it with a block of home made ice cream floating in it! Like the idea of heating the yolk mixture!

    Nov 18, 2011 at 1:15 AM

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