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My mother's favourite tipple is brandy and I have followed in her footsteps. I had my first taste of Courvoisier on a plane journey many years ago and it is now one of my favourites. Courvoisier is a French cognac and this review is of the VS (Very Special) version. Courvoisier is made in Jarnac which is in the Cognac region of France and has been made there for over 200 years. Cognac is a brandy that is distilled for at least 2 years and must use specific grapes distillation methods and barrels to be able to use the name Cognac. Courvoisier is made from a blend of cognacs aged for up to eight years and it is claimed that this was Napoleons favourite whilst he was in exile. The clear bottle contain Napoleons emblem to this day and once you unwrap the seal, simply pull out the stopper and pour into a glass. Courvoisier recommend serving this at room temperature and leave for a minute to allow it to release its aromas. The Taste I don't actually like the taste of alcohol and generally use a mixer with everything and for those of you who think that it doesn't matter and you can use any old cognac if you do water it down , well my years of experience tell me it certainly does matter. I also think that you need to drink out of a quality glass, preferably crystal as that adds to the experience. A nice brandy goblet or tumbler is a must for me. What I really like about this Cognac is that I can drink this particular brand on its own as it tastes fruity and rich with a hint of oakiness a touch sweet and is really smooth and warming. A really lovely blend that delights the taste buds and oozes quality. A delight on first taste that warms your mouth instantly and then warms the back of the throat, with no harshness, a taste that lingers and develops as you drink this. I usually add lemonade but no ice as I personally don't think this should be served cold unless you use it in a cocktail mix... Take care when you are drinking as it is 40% proof and so don't drive or try to do anything that involves heavy machinery sharp knives or fire as this has a high alcohol content and none of the aforementioned mix with strong booze. 25ml = I unit of alcohol which I guess is a very small measure. I like to use this as a base for Champagne cocktails and a whole range of other cocktails, one of which involves Grand Marnier, fresh orange, crushed ice and cream, which sounds awful but is delicious. Would I Recommend Yes this is a Cognac that lives up to the name of Very Special as it has a unique taste that is fruity and wonderfully smooth. It smells gorgeous and as it makes that satisfying glug out of the bottle into the glass. a clear gorgeous amber liquid appears- but don't get carried away as this is very strong. It is a definite winter warmer on its own or with a dash of lemonade and makes a super base for a champagne cocktail. I sometimes have this with fresh orange and crushed ice for a change and even when I go all out with a cocktail concoction, you can really tell the difference when you use Courvoisier as a blend of quality ingredients always tastes better in my opinion. A drink I associate with special occasions and Christmas as it oozes quality and tastes wonderful. But don't keep it for special occasions, indulge every now and again especially if you have a cold or I find this takes the edge off stomach pains, other aches and pains and toothache. Not an everyday drink and one that I think deserves a special glass and seems to taste better if you are dressed to the nines. The only downside for me is it can be quite difficult pronouncing the name when you order it after you have had a few! £33 for a litre at Tesco but widely available and comes in smaller sizes and miniatures. Sometimes on offer so buy when it is a good price as it doesn't seem to go off if you only drink it at Christmas. 5 stars from me.
I cannot claim to be a connoisseur of cognac but you do not have to be one in order to experience the magical feeling of this nectar. Courvoisier cognac is a name that is synonymous with high quality spirit and is one of the first brands that springs to mind when the word cognac or brandy is mentioned. The range includes the VS, VSOP and XO types. If you are an occasional cognac drinker like myself and wish to experience the true feelings of a magnificent drink then the VS is the right one for you. There are many brands of cognac and brandies available but I personally believe that this is a drink that deserves respect and therefore your choice plays a major part in this. VS stands for “Very Special” and this implies that the cognac has been aged for a certain length of time. The longer aged ones boast the symbols of VSOP and XO. Courvoisier is known for its unique association with Emperor Napoleon I, who was and avid drinker and known connoisseur of fine cognacs. This was his brand of choice and it was one this very fact that Courvoisier came into prominence. Each and every bottle of Courvoisier produced today bears Napoleon’s picture as evidence of this fact. Courvoisier cognac is produced from a grape variety that is only grown in the region of Cognac in France. The distilling process involves the nectar being distilled in something called the “Charente” alembic pot still, which is a hundreds of years old tradition still being used today. The nectar is aged in hand-crafted oak barrels for the specific amount of time depending on the type being produced. Courvoisier is acknowledged as probably the finest cognac available in the world today and this is further testified by it being the No. 2 brand in the U.K. and the No. 3 brand in the U.S.A. As mentioned earlier, although I am an occasional cognac drinker, this is a drink that I just love to indulge myself in when I need to reflect on time and matters past and present. A comfortable armchair, dimmed lights and classical music will add immensely to your drinking pleasure. All cognacs produce that almighty burning sensation when first sipped and therefore it is recommended that you first dip you finger into the glass and have a little sampler just to get your taste buds and stomach accustomed to what is about to behold them. A good sniff prior to drinking is also advisable and deemed necessary. There is also the notion that cognacs such as these are just not for our pockets and best left alone and for the upper crust of society. This is a notion that is totally untrue which is evidenced by the fact that a 75 cl. bottle of Courvoisier VS goes for only around £ 18.00. This is an extremely small price to pay for an immensely high quality drink. The alcoholic content is a respectable 40% by volume. Naturally the VSOP, XO and above are substantially more expensive and I would not recommend these to an occasional cognac drinker unless a momentous occasion in your life warrants it. Overall I am pleased with my choice after all if Napoleon loved it then why shouldn’t I.