Sunday, February 12, 2017

Dudognon Napolean Cognac (NAS), 40%, selected by Astor Wines

I like Cognac, I promise.

Granted, I far prefer the heavier spice and oak of Armagnac, but I've really enjoyed certain bottles like the Gourry de Chadeville (first release) and Palazzi's Jacky Navarre Vieille Reserve. Of course, those were cask strength beasts, and this is a much milder batch.

So is it any good? Ehhh. It kind of tastes like nothing. Maybe Canadian Club? It's light and grassy, with some wisps of honey and diluted apple juice. And that's the thing: it's too damned dilute. There is a bit of spice trying to show up, but it's drowned out. At cask strength, it would have more opportunity to shine.

Astor Wines usually makes phenomenal picks and they, along with K&L, are at the forefront of the Golden Age of Brandy, working with Palazzi and Charles Neal to bring some of the greatest French casks in the world to yuppie nerds like me. Astor's spirits team is deeply knowledgable and has never steered me wrong. Plus, they've been lovely blokes every time I've shopped there, spending time to educate me while I ramble and rant, trying to show how impressive I am.

This bottle is a rare anomaly. It's probably fine for cocktails, but I don't drink those, since I'm not a Portland digital media consultant or middle-aged divorcee.

Hey, Cognac makers: how about at least upgrading to 46%/NCF? Or better yet, cask strength? Sku has been demanding it for years! Hear the clarion call of brandy bloggers! We are the silent majority: all...two of us.

77 pts/C+. It's not bad, but it's not good either. But you can purchase here, at Astor Wines.


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