About XO Cognac

About XO Cognac
X.O. (or extra old) Cognacs require minimum of six years aging for the youngest cognac in the blend, with the average age running 20 years or older. All Cognac houses maintain inventories of old vintage Cognacs to use in blending these top of the line brands. The oldest Cognacs are removed from their casks in time and stored in glass demijohns (large jugs) to prevent further loss from evaporation and to limit excessively woody and astringent flavors.

In 2016, according the BNIC, the official Cognac regulatory agency, the minimum component age requirement for X.O. Cognac was raised to 10 years.

Top Picks for XO Cognac

Selection Olivier Blanc XO Extraordinaire Cognac
96 points
$180
Amber color. Elegant aromas of rich caramel, teriyaki sauce, roasted nut butter, fruit preserves, and anise with a round, lively, dryish medium-full body and a warming, complex, very long salted peanut skins, black tea, warm earthy spices, and menthol finish. An exceptionally balanced, powerful, and lengthy cognac for whiskey lovers.
Awards: 2017 Best XO Cognac
Courvoisier XO Cognac
95 points
$150
Copper color. Aromas of caramel drenched grilled berries, marigold blossom, nut brittle, and sweet cinnamon whipped mascarpone with a round, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and a warming, subtle, very long coconut creme anglaise, orange marmalade, clove, chicory, nori, maraschino liqueur soaked sultanas, and sponge cake in evaporated milk finish. A spectacular XO cognac that delights the senses with with waves of rich, decadent, complex flavors.
Bertrand Petite Fine Champagne Cognac XO
95 points
Deep reddish mahogany color with an olive rim. Dense aromas of varnished wood, singed nuts, cherry cola, anise, and dried fruits with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and a long, resonant finish with notes of creme brulee, honey, spiced apples, pepper, pencil shavings, and forest floor. Lots of mature, wood aged complexity and panache for very serious sipping or cigars. Make sure to aerate for several minutes.
Drouet et Fils XO Ulysse Cognac
94 points
$140
Copper color. Inviting aromas of prosciutto, cafe au lait, cherry mostarda, musk, and yuzu with a round, bright, dryish medium-to-full body and a warming, very complex, long chocolate dipped candied orange peels, cinnamon spice drops, chocolate caramel candies, and dried rose petals finish. A delicious, engaging cognac with a long, developing finish; savor.
Louis Royer XO Cognac
94 points
$139
Bright bronze color. Dense, complex aromas and flavors of caramelized black walnuts and plantains, licorice, fig paste, and spice with a velvety, bright, fruity medium-full body and a smooth, complex, medium-long finish with suggestions of pipe tobacco, mocha, cola, and mineral dust with moderate oak. A well balanced and rewarding XO that will be fantastic with cigars.
Camus Borderies XO Cognac
93 points
$159.99
Copper color. Fruity aromas of apple pie, cherry cordial, tobacco shop, chocolate shavings, and wintergreen with a round, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a sleek, captivating, medium-length chocolate coated toffee, salted caramel sponge cake, and molasses finish. A craveable XO cognac with delectable doses of caramel and chocolate flavor.
93 points $159.99
Rémy Martin 1738 Accord Royal Cognac
93 points
$49.99
Dark mahogany copper color. Rich, attractive aromas and flavors of cherry creme brulee, caramel apple, toffee, and banana cream pie with a glycerous, lively, fruity full body and a warming, complex, long finish revealing notes of chocolate alpine mint, pink peppercorn, cola, and brown spices with moderate oak. A sensational vibrant and hedonistic XO Cognac that is sure to please.
93 points $49.99
Merlet Cognac Selection Saint Sauvant
93 points
$130
Pale amber color. Delicate, lively, floral aromas and flavors of spiced apples, cherries, and pears, anise, pistachio nougat, and fuel-like minerals with a supple, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, intricate, medium-long finish with impressions of chocolate mint cookie, honeyed herbal tea, vanilla praline, and pepper. A complex and layered Cognac with beguiling, evolving flavors.
Camus "Elegance" XO Cognac
93 points
$159.99
Rich copper color. Attractive aromas of salty, caramelized roasted nuts, apple and date pastries, and a hint of sassafras with a silky, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a molasses cake, honeyed pear, peppery spice, and sandalwood accented finish. An excellent combination of vibrancy and elegance.
93 points $159.99
Bache-Gabrielsen XO Natur & Eleganse Cognac
92 points
$84.99
Copper color. Aromas of saffron, pickled apples, olives, marcona almonds, spearmint, and plum butter on caraway rye with a round, vibrant, dryish medium body and an intricate, medium-long dried starfruit, white pepper, and fine leather finish. An elegant, slow moving cognac for contemplative enjoyment.
92 points $84.99