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Rémy Martin XO Excellence Review

REMY XO and box

The House of Rémy Martin

Rémy Martin is a producer of champagne cognacs including Grande Champagne, Fine Champagne and Petit Champagne cognacs. Rémy Martin is the second largest Cognac House, behind Hennessy. Rémy Martin’s vineyards are the largest in the Grande and Petit Champagne appellations in the Cognac region. Rémy Martin also obtains wine for distillation from 1,200 growers in the region through the Fine Champagne Alliance (see Rémy Martin -Cognac Wine Growers video below).

Rémy Martin XO Excellence Cognac

Rémy Martin XO Excellence, was created in 1981 by Rémy’s cellar master André Giraud (Rémy cellar master from 1960-1990). Rémy Martin XO is a Fine Champagne Cognac, that blends eaux de-vie from the Grand (85%) and Petite (15%) Champagne growing crus in the Cognac region. Rémy Martin describes its XO as “the excellence of Cognac Fine Champagne.”

Rémy Martin XO is perhaps the centerpiece of the company’s strategy to capitalize on their dominance in the Petite and Grand Champagne cognac market. Along with its other Fine Champagne cognacs like their V.S.O.P (55% Grande Champagne/45% Petite Champagne) and 1738 Accord Royal (65% Grande Champagne/35% Petite Champagne) and 100% Grand Champagne cognac Louis XIII are Rémy’s fastest-growing products in China and the Americas.

The Rémy Martin XO Excellence Review

We tasted Rémy Martin XO Excellence straight in a brandy snifter. Here are our notes.

Price

Of the XO cognacs produced by the big four, including, Hennessy, Martell, and Courvoisier, Rémy Martin XO is priced ahead of Courvoisier but lower than Martell’s XO and the priciest, Hennessy’s XO.

Alcohol: 40% (80 proof)

Age: Rémy Martin XO is a blend of over 400 eaux-de vie from the Grande and Petite Champagne growing crus and is aged between 10 and thirty-seven years in French Limousin oak barrels.

The Bottle/Label

Rémy Martin XO Excellence is packaged in a apple shaped decanter with a a red and gold Rémy emblem inset on the center of the bottle that reads “Rémy Martin Fine Champagne Cognac” “XO Excellence”. (see above)

The Color

Dark mahogany.

The Nose (Nez)

Orange, jasmine.

Mouth (En Bouche)

Candied orange, cinnamon and hazelnut.

Rémy Martin gives its XO Excellence a 3/5 for “smoothness” which they describe as the “sensation on the mouth giving mellowness, balance and perfect harmony”. We concur. Rémy Martin XO is not overly smooth as there is a slightly biting nutty spice attack.

Finish

Long nutty cinnamon/cardomon finish. Rémy Martin’s site ranks Rémy Martin XO Excellence as having a 4/5 length meaning a short “length of time for which the tastes are expressed after a sip.”

Overall

This is a cognac that is very similar in character and flavor to Rémy Martin’s 1738 Accord Royal, yet a step up. Indeed, XO Excellence tastes enhanced/concentrated compared to Accord Royal with its lighter caramel tones. We did not try Rémy Martin XO in any cocktails, nor do we intend to do so as it provides a superb sipping experience.

We did, however, try Rémy Martin XO with chocolate (60% cocoa) and chocolate macaroons as recommended in the video below. We pass along the recommendation!

Awards

2010 Spirits Business Cognac Masters (UK) – Gold Medal
2014 San Francisco World Spirits Competition – Gold Medal

Learn about Rémy Martin’s Alliance Fine Champagne which is now more than 50 years old:

For details on Rémy Martin tours click here.

The Rémy Martin House
20, Rue de la Société Vinicole – 16100 COGNAC
Tél: + 33 (0)5 45 35 76 66
Email: visites.remymartin@remy-cointreau.com
Website: http://www.visitesremymartin.com/

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