Clicky

10 Best XO Cognac Brands For The Money (2022 Updated)

Last Updated on August 3, 2022 by Lydia Martin

XO Cognacs are extremely expensive, and we’re taking it upon ourselves to ensure you don’t buy a lackluster bottle. 

Here’s a comprehensive list of the best XO cognac for the money. 

Top 10 XO Cognacs That Won’t Break Your Bank

10. Hine Cognac Antique XO 

Hine Cognac Antique XO

ABV: 40% 

Average Price: Around $200 

Hine Cognac Antique XO is an extraordinary cognac made from a blend of 40 different Eaux de vies.

It is made with 100 percent grande champagne grapes and aged for an average of two decades. 

The brand’s Antique label is consistent with their other bottles: fruity, floral, and elegant. The spirit is rich with dark chocolate, licorice, and cedar flavors and is best enjoyed neat. 

9. Hennessy XO Cognac

Hennessy XO Cognac

ABV: 40% 

Average Price: Around $200 

If you like XO cognac, you have Maurice Hennessy himself to thank for it — it is said that he coined the term and the production process some 150 years ago. 

Of course, it’s only fitting that the Hennessy XO Cognac makes it to our list of the best XOs in the market.

This is a more robust XO cognac with lots of rich and spicy flavors. Dark chocolate, clove, wood-driven smoke, and dried fruit all coated the palate as soon as we took a sip. 

8. Louis Royer XO Cognac

Louis Royer X.O Cognac

ABV: 40% 

Average Price: Around $150 

Most Americans aren’t familiar with Louis Royer, but the brand has been around since the mid-1800s.

This cognac is made using a blend of the distillery’s oldest stocks of Crus (fine Champagne, Borderies, and Fins Bois) to achieve a profile with the perfect balance of being rich yet subtle. [1

Dried fruits, citrus, cocoa, and leather are some flavor notes you’ll detect in a sip. We suggest adding a bit of water to the cognac to make the flavors and aromas open up even more. 

7. Martell XO

Martell XO

ABV: 40% 

Average Price: Around $300 

The Martell XO is made from a blend of grande and petite Champagne, giving it intense notes of red fruit, blackcurrant, and fig and an exceptionally long, robust finish.

It has a great mouthfeel and structure that many cognac lovers will surely enjoy.

We highly suggest you try this cognac neat, but if you find it too overwhelming, you can add a few drops of water. 

6. Rémy Martin XO

Rémy Martin XO

ABV: 40% 

Average Price: Around $200 

Remy Martin XO is the brainchild of the brand’s Cellar Master Baptiste Loiseau — the youngest of all time.

He expertly blends up to 400 Eaux-de-vies from the best vineyards of cognac — petite and Grande Champagne.

This XO Cognac is velvety and rich, with lingering fruit flavors of juicy plums and candied oranges. 

5. Park Cognac XO Cigar Blend 

Park Cognac XO Cigar Blend

ABV: 40% 

Average Price: Around $180 

Cognac enthusiasts are well-aware that this spirit pairs extremely well with cigars.

The Park Cognac XO Cigar Blend was created with this in mind: it is a cigar-friendly Cognac with a big, fruity character, made from Grande Champagne and Petite Champagne and aged in barrels with a medium toast for at least 30 years.

We have to say that this is a bit sweeter and richer than their original XO label. 

4. Cognac Frapin – Chateau Fontpinot XO

Cognac Frapin - Chateau Fontpinot XO

ABV: 41% 

Average Price: Around $130

The Cognac Frapin – Chateau Fontpinot is so well-balanced that a judge likened it to being “almost architectural.”

It is a beautiful composition of cinnamon, vanilla, candied fruit, and prominent oak that develops further the more you sip it.

We have no other recommendations for this other than you should make it a point to sip slowly to savor all of its flavor notes. 

3. Bache-Gabrielsen Natur & Eleganse XO Cognac

Bache-Gabrielsen on table with cocktail glass 

ABV: 41% 

Average Price: Around $130 

The Natur and Eleganse line from the Bache-Gabrielsen brand has a more “masculine” and modern take than some of their older bottles.

This XO is surprisingly woodsy — maybe more so than other traditional cognacs. It has a rich and warming palate, rife with notes of chocolate candy, roasted figs, walnut, and cinnamon. 

The spirit is aged anywhere from 10 to 30 years and made exclusively from ugni blanc grapes grown in the Petite Champagne and Fins Bois regions. 

2. Courvoisier XO

Courvoisier XO with box on desk

ABV: 40% 

Average Price: Around $270 

You didn’t think we’d leave cognac giant Courvoisier out of the list, did you?

Coming in at number two, the Courvoisier XO is everything you would expect from the brand: vibrancy, freshness, and depth, with layers of fig, raisin, plum, and candied orange flavors. 

We especially enjoyed this one neat as we had a lot of fun dissecting the flavor notes, but we imagine its fruit-forward notes would also work extremely well in a Sidecar. 

1. Cognac Paul Giraud XO 

Cognac Paul Giraud XO on desk with glass

ABV: 40% 

Average Price: $150 

Our favorite cognac for the money is definitely the Cognac Paul Giraud XO.

This spirit has a full, creamy mouthfeel, with plenty of hearty chocolate and caramel, and is balanced out with fresh honey notes. It has a smooth, round finish. 

The Giraud family is one of the last estates to grow their own grapes and harvest them by hand. Their XO is produced from the Grande Champagne region: ugni blanc, Folle Blanche, and colombard grapes. [2

The family distillery is passed down from generation to generation to ensure that we have access to rare, quality cognacs today — this one is aged for a minimum of 25 years in barrels with a medium toast.  

FAQs 

Is XO a good cognac for the money?

XO is definitely a good cognac for the money, considering it is aged for no less than ten years.

Unlike other spirits, the quality of cognac gets better the more it stays inside the barrel, which is why many cognac enthusiasts are willing to pay a premium price just to get a bottle of XO (extra old). 

What is the smoothest XO cognac for the money? 

We’re probably biased, but the smoothest XO cognac for the money has to be Courvoisier XO.

We imagine cognacs to cost anywhere over $150, but for just $100, you can have a smooth sipper that you’ll proudly share with your friends.

We imagine this has to do with the brand’s carefully-selected Eaux de vie from the Cognac region. 

Are affordable XO cognacs good for your health?

Yes, affordable XO cognacs are good for your health. XO cognacs especially are full of health benefits, such as containing a high amount of ellagic acid from the aging process inside the barrels. It keeps free radicals from damaging your healthy cells. 

A glass of cognac a day also keeps your heart healthy as it lowers the risk of blood clots that can cause heart diseases.

If you have the sniffles, reach for a glass of cognac to unclog that stuffy nose. 

Conclusion

Cognac is one of the most expensive spirits, but if you choose wisely, they’ll give you the best return for your money. 

The best XO cognac for the money is, hands down, Cognac Paul Giraud XO.

For just $200, you’ll get a spirit with a nice, creamy mouthfeel and balanced flavor notes of chocolate, caramel, and fresh honey. 

The spirit is aged 25 years and is made with only the finest grapes from the Grande Champagne region: ugni blanc, Folle Blanche, and colombard. 

Other XO cognacs at the 0-ish price point include Cognac Frapin – Chateau Fontpinot XO, Bache-Gabrielsen Natur and Eleganse XO, and Cognac Courvoisier XO. These are all excellent cognacs that’ll give you your money’s worth. 

We know cognacs are quite pricey, and we hope this list has helped narrow down the choices. Thanks for reading, as always! 

References: 

  1. https://www.winemag.com/2020/12/18/champagne-grapes-guide/
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/agricultural-and-biological-sciences/ugni

Leave a Comment