Cognac vs. Cigars
When you consider a beverage perfectly matching a cigar, cognac is the first you probably think of. This pairing is time-tested, thus a classic one. Here are some of our suggestions, which could help you while choosing an appropriate sort of cognac to your stogie.
Our suggestion list begins with Courvoisier - a famous French cognac with subtle aromas and bouquet, which matches almost every cigar. Other famous brands which are no lesser known all over the world - Davidoff Extra and Pinar del Rio also pair well with the majority of cigars. Still, Davidoff Extra cognac doesn't reveal anything extraordinary with a cigar. Such marques as Fussigny with notes of jasmine, chocolate and deeper woody notes, Hine with nuances of honey and apricot and Martell with spicy and floral notes go pretty well with milder stogies. Another cognac, which is distinguished by its woody, vanilla and cinnamon aromas, namely, Hennessy is the best with medium cigars. And, finally, the amateurs of full-bodied cigars will really appreciate the leathery, woody tones of Pierre Ferrand.
You should also know that cognac is somehow similar to Armagnac, which is considered to be cognac's most important competitor. These two beverages are made from the same sort of grape. But Armagnac's distilling technology differs from cognac's one by more delicacy.
Le Legendaire is one of the most famous types of Armagnac, which is known for its spicy, floral and earthy notes. It is advised to match it with Hoyo de Monterrey Double Coronas and Epicure #1.
While degusting this armagnac, your mouth fills with rich fruity and woody notes, accentuating the palate on prunes and dry figs. The finish is magic, very pure and leaves long lasting sweetness.
However choosing a pair for the cigar - cognac or armagnac - is a matter of personal preference, which will not be discussed here.
Right below are presented the long-awaited carefully selected parings that should serve as patterns for your own future pickup.
Cigar Club Cognac
The Cigar Club cognac is created by Jean Fillioux in 1995, the spirit it is made of is taken from the Grande Champagne region solely from the 1968 year harvest. The cognac tempts you to smell the exclusive and indeed honeyed delicacy of its almond, vanilla and cigar-box scents. You will enjoy its subtly combined aromas of comfit, cinnamon and black chocolate.
This excellent beverage with coppery glisten is pliant in nature, graceful but full-bodied and viscous enough. An ideal pair for both your Cuban and non-Cuban stogies.
El Rey Del Mundo Tainos is a pleasant cigar, light with sweet vegetal nuances. Goes pretty well with the cognac. They complement each other and emit some hidden notes making them more obvious.
Cienfuegos Hot Shot a good quality cigar with a very delicate oily wrapper and conical cap. Before lightning, the cigar is quite modest, doesn't reveal anything special, with subtle tobacco and woody nuances. But the light revives the stogie making it emit spicy notes and chocolate nuances. This is a strong stick, which becomes even more powerful in this pair although it does not disclose abundant nuances.
Ramon Allones Specially Selected could be a perfect match with Cigar Club Cognac if comparing their strength but this does not help them a lot. Cigar's fragrance is becoming elusive and you can immediately mark a harsh soapy note, which somehow occurs supplementing the floral nuances of the beverage.
The Honduran Rocky Patel Vintage 1992 is a cigar with various aroma nuances such as earth, dry grass and spice but the main is the coffee aroma which persists throughout smoking. It seems to be a modest stogie at first and then suddenly you can notice all its hidden leathery and spicy hints, earthy and animal flavors.
In this combination the cigar sharply reveals its animal aroma. Besides that, the stick gets a supplementary acuteness and the burning odor becomes more powerful in the aftertasting. It is difficult to say who benefits from this match, it is rather that both cognac and cigar gain mutual profit.
Club Cigare XO Cognac
This cognac has been specially created for cigars and non randomly carries the name of a famous cigar magazine. The owner of this periodical liked the pairing of the cognac with a cigar so much that he even offered the name of his journal to be used as beverage name.
This is an amazing cognac with specific characteristics. Due to its special distilling technology, Club Cigare XO keeps its fruitiness emitting diverse spicy notes and a long complex aftertaste.
This is one of the most ideal cigar matching cognacs and here are some advices from experts about cigars that go better with this beverage:
The Honduran Cienfuegos Hot Shot goes well enough with this cognac. The combination of these two is beneficial for both and satisfies the smoker with the chocolate and woody cognac's flavor. Though the blend seems to be very sharp this will please the amateurs of adrenaline buzz taste.
As opposed to the previous cigar, the mixture of Cuban Ramon Allones with this cognac is strong but doesn't seem harsh and will be definitely to aficionado's liking.
In the combination of Club Cigare XO with another famous Habano El Rey Del Mundo Tainos, the sweet taste of the cognac feels abundant, meanwhile the cigar's flavour seems too plain, almost faint. It is obvious from the beginning that none of them takes advantage from this pairing.
Pairing Rocky Patel Vintage 1992 with the beverage is not quite a good idea though this could be curious for some aficionados. The cognac flavor is cut apart: the hints are broken off, both the fume and the earthy notes become more evident. The savour tends to heaviness and becomes more acute and hot. Although cognac's taste is left untouched, you can feel not very agreeable note of an overmature fruit.
Cohiba Extra Cognac
It is impossible to describe a cognac and not to mention its producer. The house Renault-Bisquit has a long story, which begins from the year 1819 where a young man Alexander Bisquit has founded the company and started this very successful business. To its double name the enterprise is obliged to the merge of such houses as CASTILLON RENAULT and BISQUIT-DUBOUCHE in 1991.
The characteristic feature of this beverage is an amazing freshness and a pronounced flavour of orange, almond, hazelnut, vanilla and honey. The finish is continuous with obvious hints of honey, spices, dairy caramel and dried fruit.
The cognac has been produced at the personal request of Fidel Castro and is a perfect match with Cohiba Robusto - the most famous Cuban cigar brand. The stogie is medium to full bodied with tones of spice, wood, clove and wine.
Unfortunately it's impossible to say the same about another well-known Cuban cigar El Rey Del Mundo Tainos which is a Churchill of a great taste. This is a light bodied high quality stogie with woody and floral notes and easy, agreeable draw. Still, Cohiba Extra Cognac overwhelms this cigar releasing too much of sweetness whereas El Rey Del Mundo seems to be too simple and tasteless.
In the combination with Ramon Allones Specially Selected, both the stick and the beverage show their might, obviously generating a powerful and sharp feeling that is very pleasant. The most important why this pair goes pretty well is due to the richness of its aromatic nuances, which match together so well.
In the pair Cohiba Extra Cognac and Rocky Patel Vintage 1992, the beverage simply ruins cigar's flavor completely dominating it. The only thing that is left unaffected is the peppery aroma, which becomes harsh during the procedure.
It's not worth pairing with another non-Cuban Cienfuegos Hot Shot as well. The beverage seems to have too much sweetness and harshness. The acute pepper hint in the stogie doesn't seem to soften the impression. Thus, if you equally value both a classy cognac and a qualitative cigar be aware of this pairing. Try something from the above pickups.