|Origin||Fins Bois, France|
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Cognac Leyrat XO Vieille Reserve Fins Bois is a blend of Cognacs which as an XO must have a minimum age of at least 10 years old. The rules for XO Cognac changed in April 2018 so that the minimum age spirit in an XO blend must be 10 years old. It was previously 6 years old. In practise, most small, high quality producers XO Cognacs far exceeded this minimum age anyway.
Leyrat Cognac is a single estate Cognac made at Domaine de Chez Maillard in the Fin Bois region of Cognac. It is an exceptional site producing outstanding cognacs. The vineyards have excellent chalky soils and receive above average sun due to their superb aspects; in short, the vineyards offer the perfect terroir to produce this distinct cognac. For the past five years, owner Francis Abécassis (he also owns Cognac Le Reviseur in Petit Champagne) has awakened the world to quality Fins Bois cognacs produced on his 53 hectare estate. He has not only renovated the entire estate and its vineyards, added modern stainless steel fermenting tanks and new ageing cellars but he has also ensured that the distillation is supervised by an award-winning distiller. Additionally, he has disposed of all cognacs not regarded as having the required typicity and invested in new oak – sound investments for the future of the estate’s cognacs, which have already begun to win medals and plaudits around the world.
Leyrat Cognacs are distilled in a 2500 litre still which is manually operated with the distiller deciding the cut. The cognac is aged in new casks for only 6-12 months whilst (at Le Reviseur they receive more than a year before being moved). Both estates carry out a triple ageing process, first in new oak, followed by casks of between 4-12 years of age and then in older or ‘exhausted’ casks to finish their ageing.
Cognac Leyrat XO Vieille Reserve Fins Bois is crafted from a blend of approximately 20 cognacs which were aged for considerable length in different warehouses and were already at reduced strengths, around 43%.
Cognac Leyrat XO Vieille Reserve is an old gold colour. The first nose is of spices and wood that then evolves to warm aromas of acacia honey and candied orange. Smelling a second time one finds sweet ginger notes combined with nutmeg. The mouth-feel is supple and harmonious. It is silky and full on the palette. The finish is characterised by notes of vanilla and brioche.