"Thank you" cognac - ~$100?
I want to buy a nice bottle of cognac for my father-in-law as a thank you present. We bought him a bottle of Pierre Ferrand Selection des Anges and he loved it (it's also all gone). We have been drinking the Ambre as an every day cognac.
I'd like to find something of equal quality in that price range. We recently went to a tasting for some Jean Fillioux cognacs and there was one he liked better than the PF. I'm leaning towards that if I can find it, but was hoping to get some other opinions. I did a search, but find most threads looking for bottles in the $30-$50 range. Based on the last couple of tastings I've been to, it seems like there is a big difference once you get into the $50+ bottles. Any thoughts or suggestions? Thanks.
I love Delamain, but their Vesper is a bit above this price range at around $135 these days. What I can wholeheartedly recommend, however, is Martell Cordon Bleu. OK, it's not one of your more exotic brands, but trust me, this stuff is ethereally delicious, light, complex and an absolute connoisseur's delight. Far beyond their run-of-the-mill VSOP. Shop around and you should be able to find a bottle for $90 - $100.
Maybe one of the California alembics? IMHO Germain-Robin fights well above its weight class; the XO goes for ~$100 and is far better than many brandies costing twice as much. Or you can spend a little less - Jepson makes a $40 "very rare" that's holds its own against $80-100 cognacs.
Since you know he liked the Pierre Ferrand (good news!), I would look towards even smaller, more artisinal producers. The problem, for me, is that I do not know what is available in Massachusetts . . .
So, with that in mind, you might want to look for the following producers:
1) Maison Surrenne Cognac -- see http://www.surrenne.com/ or http://www.caddellwilliams.com/catDetail.php?id=1&PHPSESSID=937367f8691a535e8bc7c732b57bed76 and then scroll down.
1a) While you're looking at that second site, check out Germain-Robin Alambic Brandy. It's made by Hubert Robin, whose family has made Cognac for generations, but Hubert chose to make brandy here in California, using traditional Cognac methods.
2) Cognac Logis de la Mothe -- see http://logisdelamothe.com/index2.php?l=Ang&p=Produits
3) Cognac Tesseron -- see http://www.cognactesseron.com/
4) Leopold Gourmel Cognac -- see http://www.leopold-gourmel.com/ -- but be warned, these are "beaucoups d'argent!"
Be advised, these are difficult to find; not everyone carries these Cognacs.
Some options that are a bit easier to find include . . .
5) Hine Cognac -- see http://www.hinecognac.com/a001uk_home.htm
6) Delamain Cognac -- see http://le-cognac.com/delamain/us/inde...
You may also want to consider an Armagnac or a Calvados . . . if you want recommendations for those, let me know.