A Cognac may only be soldy when its youngest eau-de-vie reaches a minimum of two and a half years old, as of the first day of October following the harvest of the grapes.
Only the years of storage in oak barrels count to determine its age.
Once transferred into glass, the Cognac stops maturing . It stands still.
V.S (for Very Special) , also called *** (or Three Stars) is a cognac which youngest eau-de-vie is at least two and a half years old.
V.S.O.P ( for Very Superior Old Pale) , also called Reserve, is a cognac which youngest eau-de-vie is between four and a half and six and a half years old.
XO (for Extra Old ) , Napoléon, also called Hors d'âge, is a cognac which youngest eau-de-vie is at least six and a half years old.
Most Cognac houses will use Cognacs much older than those required by law, allowing X.Os to reach a minimum of twenty years old, in order to reveal their very best.
Un voyage de rève
In the middle of the 18th century, James Delamain, a young man from Ireland, undertook a journey to France tracing the steps of his ancestors a century earlier. He discovered the rolling countryside of the Charente, where he promptly settled to start a family and establish his company.
Created in 1991 by Bernard & Jacques HINE, the great great great great grandsons of Thomas HINE to celebrate to bicentenary of their ancestor's arrival in France. They selected their most prestigious cognac, TRIOMPHE, for this occasion.