Hennessy is the largest cognac house in the world. Founded by Irish immigrant Richard Hennessy, the House of Hennessy commands approximately 40% of the world cognac market. Hennessy produces a full range of quality products from its V.S. to Paradise cognacs. Hennessy is now owned by French luxury goods conglomerate Moet-Hennessy Louis Vuitton.
Hennessy is the clear cognac market leader in the category not because of lower prices but rather due to quality, marketing, and name recognition. Indeed, Hennessy V.S.O.P Privilege is priced at the high end of the V.S.O.P range of most cognac houses‘ V.S.O.P. offerings.
Privilege is the highest priced of the big four cognac houses V.S.O.P offerings priced about 40% higher than Courvoisier and Martell V.S.O.P. cognacs and about 25% more than Rémy Martin’s V.S.O.P. cognac.
Alcohol: 40% (80 proof)
Age: Hennessy V.S.O.P. is a blend of about 60 different Eaux-de-vie made from Ugni Blanc grapes from the Borderies, Fins Bois, Grande Champagne, and Petite Champagne appellations that are aged four to fifteen years in French Limousin oak barrels.
Hennessy V.S.O.P. is packaged in an attractive bell-shaped bottle with the Hennessy coat-of-arms surrounded by a wreath of grapevines featured on the label with a medallion reading “Maison Fondee 1765” embossed at the base of the neck.
Fresh and light, the bitter oak is beautifully balanced by the sweet honey that develops as the white grape transforms into a sugary grape compote. The sweetness does not dominate, because within it is a nuttiness and woody bitterness that brings some ground coffee; beautifully balancing out that sweetness. This is my type of cognac, not too fruity or sweet, and nothing really “stands out”; it is not too oak influence, too sweet, spicy, or bitter. The cognac has a harmonious character that delivers a smooth-tasting cognac without noticeable ripples.