Thursday, December 9, 2010

Brandy Friday: Brandy Gifts

I don't review as many brandies as whiskeys, but I wanted to make note of a few that would make good holiday gifts for those of you who like your brandy sans the egg nog.

Cognac: If you like variety, you will have great fun with the Delamain Sampler which includes three 200 ml bottles of the basic expressions of Delemain Cognac. Given that you would have to pay more than $400 for full bottles of these three brandies, this is a great chance to sample the major offerings from one of the most popular Cognac bottlers.

Apple Brandy: For something totally different, I'd recommend the excellent apple brandy from Germain-Robin in Mendocino County. This Calvados-style brandy has a beautiful aroma of fresh apples but without too much sweetness. It retails for around $65.

Budget Brandy: Cognac doesn't come cheap, but there are few better deals than Jean Fillioux's Balzac VSOP. Fillioux is one of the great remaining small Cognac houses and the Balzac, at $35, is a fantastic brandy and is one of the best deals on any spirit.

Happy holidays!

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