This Drouet et Fils Cognac is a variation on the XO Cuvee Ulysse which has been developed for the cigar smoker (the bottle even has a space inside for your cigar!) with subtle but distinct additional flavour which makes it the ideal accompaniment to a cigar. The ages of the cognacs used vary between 15-25 years.
Similar aromas to the same company's Cuvee Ulysse (sweet spongcake, brown sugar, oak, cooked apples etc), but with a big jump in intensity. Also much more prominent spices - black pepper, clove, crystallised ginger etc - all of which is absolutely correct, and fully befits a cognac designed for the sybaritic types that like to enjoy a special smoke with their special cognac.
Just as full-on as one would hope, without overbalancing into clumsiness or vulgarity. Immense flavours rescued by the fine oak tannins and silky texture. Rich and densely-woven, but with a definite emphasis on the sweetness and the spices, which set up camp on the tastebuds and refuse to shift. Pretty epic stuff.
Extra-long and warming, with remarkable persistence. Many minutes later it shows little sign of letting up. Eventual mouth-watering fade as the pepper and honey finally dissolve. Still detectable after 15 minutes, a cigarette and two glasses of water.
Cigar not really optional. An immense dram with more grace than most cigar cuvees. If I could afford to lounge in the libraries of posh clubs smoking fat Montecristos, this is what I'd want in my snifter.
Tasting notes by Tim Forbes at The Whisky Exchange