People began the distillation of brandy at the beginning of the 1300s. It is primarily for medicinal use, and up to these days, many enthusiasts drink brandy for its health benefits. But did you know that some brands offer this beloved spirit at the price of a Ferrari sports car?
Learn more about the world’s most expensive brandy brands and what makes them extra special.
Top 19 Most Expensive Brandies in the World
1. Henri IV Dudognon Heritage Cognac Grande Champagne
It is considered the ultimate brandy and the DNA of cognacs. The spirit went through a century of aging before housing it in the most intricately designed bottles in the world. The decanter weighs eight kilograms adorned with sterling platinum, 24-carat gold, and six thousand diamond crystals.
The price range is approximately $1,500,000 to $2,000,000, enough to buy a Ferrari Monza.
2. Hennessy Beaute du Siecle Cognac
The next one does not only offer a bottle of cognac, but it also comes as a small treasure chest with four glasses and a container. It is a piece of art designed by Jean-Michael Othoniel that stays true to its name as the “Beauty of the Century.”
The spirit is a blend of rare Eaux-de-vie, produced only for a hundred pieces. Its estimated price is around $195,000.
3. Croizet Cognac Leonie 1858
This one was purchased by Ms. Maggi Vong in 2011, making it a Guinness world record holder as the most expensive cognac bottle sold at auction . The original owner was Lee Tachman, known for collecting special spirits such as this cognac.
Being a pre-phylloxera cognac is already a treasure among enthusiasts, but President Dwight D. Eisenhower also opened this bottle of brandy. Its selling price of around $156,760 made headlines all over the world.
4. Cognac Brugerolle 1795
Among the most expensive cognacs has accompanied Napoleon on his battles. The Brugerolle is highly requested by the military of the 18th century. It has a 40% alcohol content and has a dark color sealed by wax.
The bottle sold at an estimated $149,943 at Christineʼs, London, was the last of its kind.
5. 1762 Gautier Cognac
During an online auction in 2020 held by Sothebyʼs, the 1762 Gautier earned a Guinness title as the oldest cognac ever bought . It is a 250-year-old bottle of brandy distilled when George Washington was still 30 years old, and the French Revolution had not yet begun.
An Asian private collector purchased this cognac for less than $144,000.
6. Louis XIII de Remy Martin Rare Cask Grande Champagne Cognac
Another rare cognac from France has a limited number of bottles produced worldwide. It was aged using an extremely rare cask that gives it a quality blend of mushrooms and nuts. The cognac was bottled in Baccarat black crystal, containing a higher alcohol content of 42.6%.
It was available for at least $10,000 before, but the latest amount rose to around $35,000.
Read: Top Brandies For Sangria
7. Remy Martinʼs Louis XIII Grande Champagne Très Vieille Age Inconnu
This product is Remy Martin’s next entry to one of the most expensive brandies in the world. The ingredients used here were at least a hundred years old, mixed with younger blends to obtain the standard alcohol content of 40%.
Its production dates back to 1950 during the reign of King George VI, father of the current Queen of England . This product has a recorded selling price of around $70,155.
8. Louis XIII Black Pearl
The Black Pearl is a limited edition release with almost eight hundred bottles available worldwide. It comes from a single cask stored in a private cellar of the Heriard Dubreuil family. A crystal decanter housed this rare cognac for the anniversary celebration of Louis XIII.
A 750 ml bottle is around $31,000, while a 1000 ml is available for at least $65,000.
9. HINE 250 Years Decanter 1953 Cognac
Hine Cognac released a limited 250 bottles of this product for its 250th anniversary. It came from a single barrel left to age in the cellars of the Hineʼs family since 1953. The flavor notes of this cognac include tobacco, orange, and leather, presented in Baccarat decanter.
It is available for around $17,163, but the limited quantity nowadays leaves it at a much higher price.
10. Camus Cuvee 5.150
The Camus Cuvee 5.150 is slightly generous for producing 1,492 Baccarat decanters on their 150th anniversary. The pride of this cognac relies on its rich and balanced flavors of vanilla, pear, and apricot. It finishes with notes of tropical fruits and sweet almonds.
The presentation includes two tasting glasses and a glossy black case, available at around $13,500.
11. Hardy Le Printemps Lalique Cognac Grande Champagne
The Printemps is a classified Premier Cru from the Grande Champagne territories of France. The ingredients, carefully selected before World War II ended, gave it a dominant flavor of chocolate and coffee.
The Lalique crystal decanter was exclusively made for the Hardy House and priced at least $15,291.
12. Hardy Perfection 140 years
Another expensive type of brandy from the Hardy House is the worldʼs oldest and only unblended cognac. Many enthusiasts consider liquors made from grapes harvested pre-phylloxera years as a real treasure. Grape phylloxera was a microscopic insect that destroyed almost every vineyard in Europe.
The price of Perfection 140 is around $11,000 to $13,000.
13. Hennessy Ellipse
The Ellipse entered the market in 2006 with around 2000 bottles made. This cognac is sought-after for many collectors because of its rich history and elegant presentation. But the spirit itself also boasts a harmonious powerful blend, making this unique piece of art a good display addition.
Some of the available bottles cost more than $12,000 online.
14. Hardy LʼEte Lalique Cognac Grande Champagne
The Hardy LʼEte does not significantly differ from its previously mentioned cousin, the Printemps. It has a blend of six cognacs which leaves a flavor of honey and cinnamon, bottled in a Lalique crystal decanter.
The 750 ml has an average price of $14,500, while 1000 ml is around $32,000.
15. Hennessy Timeless Cognac
Four generational masters have supervised this to create a harmonious blend of eleven Eaux-de-vies from the previous century. This Hennessy was aged in oak barrels, creating a natural fruity aroma and floral notes.
This cognac has a signature sweet taste that does not trace any bitterness. The price ranges from $10,500 to $16,000 per crystal bottle made by Baccarat. But, what does brandy really taste like?
16. Hardy Privilege Caryota Lalique Cognac Grande Champagne
Privilege Caryota is a cognac distilled before World War I and then held in a Lalique decanter in 1983. The product comes with a standard bottle of a limited edition Lalique crystal and an elegant red box, making it an ideal gift for special occasions.
The average price of this cognac is approximately $12,700.
17. Cave de lʼHotel de Paris Grande Champagne Cognac
A rare bottle stocked in cellars of a hotel in Monte Carlo, France, is among the most expensive brandies worldwide. It was produced in 1810, resulting in an old and vintage cognac. The overall presentation is standard, but the tattered and yellowed labels appeal to every collectorʼs eyes.
It is a rare bottle to find nowadays, but it is around $10,000.
18. 1865 Manoir de Beraut Comte de Goyon Armagnac
Armagnac from the Manoir de Beraut house is another vintage type of brandy. The bottle, which has existed since the early 1960s, was old and dusty. The grapefruit was specially grown for Charles Marie de Goyon, a French senator and general, also believed to be the co-owner of this spirit.
Wine Searcher listed the price of this vintage Armagnac for approximately $8,590.
19. Lecompte Secret Calvados, France
The Lecompte Secret Calvados is a French brandy that is an ideal food companion according to the traditions of Normandy. The spirit has a mellow and round aroma with the finishing taste of apples.
A 750 ml bottleʼs price is around $2,500 and is probably the cheapest among the list of expensive brandies.
What Makes A Brandy Expensive?
Brandy is a distilled drink, originally known in Dutch as heated or burned wine. The grape is the most commonly used fruit in making wine. Cognacs and Armagnac are two types of brandies that have to use specified grape varieties grown in designated regions of France.
Even the harvesting time of these grapes has to follow strict guidelines, making these types of brandies limited and more valuable than other liquors.
- Brandy – Brandies were used as medicines during the 14th century, earning it the name Lʼeau de vie or water of life. It is a fermented fruit juice or wine with a rich and long history giving it more freedom to its pricing. Check out the best brandy brands here.
- Cognac – For a spirit to be called cognac, there is a list of guidelines to follow. The grapes used have to come from the Cognac region of France and must be distilled twice in copper pot stills.
- Armagnac – Another variety of brandy comes from ingredients harvested in the Armagnac regions. It differs from cognacs in the distillation process, leaving thicker and richer flavors .
- VS – The Very Special label means that the product contains the youngest brandy aged in oak casks for around two years.
- XO – Extra Old has a minimum aging process of ten years.
- AC – It is the youngest brandy among the labels. These are brandies aged for a minimum of two years.
- Vintage – Vintage is a label of brandies that pertains to the aged spirit in oak woods before it transfers to their designated bottle.
- VSOP – Very Superior Old Pale brandy has at least four years of aging.
- Hors dʼage – It is a label used to indicate brandies aged beyond 20 years. Hors dʼage has a higher price than most labels.
Just like whiskey, brandies must go through an aging process. The older brandies are more expensive than the young ones. One reason is that the long aging period causes some parts of the brandy to evaporate, leaving the producer with a limited final product. But, what’s the real difference between brandy and whiskey?
The rarity of aged brandy appeals to many collectors with a significantly higher price.
Some of the expensive brandies made it on the list primarily because of the presentation. Like the most expensive cognac in the world, the Henri IV Dudognon Heritage has a majestic decanter made of diamond, gold, and platinum.
On the other hand, some high-priced brandies on the list partnered up with Lalique or Baccarat for their crystal decanters. A brandy presented in an elegant decanter has a higher price.
Old firms like Remy Martin already have established good relations with brandy enthusiasts. They have been producing quality and rare brandies for a long time, which they have perfected by doing experiments through the years.
Some of the brandies that have been there for centuries demand a higher price, while new distillers often have younger and cheaper brandies.
Distillation & Production Cost
A different type of brandy needed a specific fruit to ferment. The grape used has to follow a list of guidelines to earn the name of cognac. The same thing goes with Armagnac, where the grape varieties include Colombard, Folle Blanche, and Ugni Blanc.
A brandy distilled for a long time is way more expensive because of the cost acquired through the long process. But is brandy good for you?
Is Calvados considered a brandy?
Yes, Calvados is an apple brandy strictly made from Normandy.
Why is King Louis Cognac so expensive?
The King Louis Cognac is so expensive because of the decades spent making this type of brandy. It took a lot of skills to make a perfect blend using brandies from different casks.
What is the worldʼs most expensive brandy bottle?
The most expensive brandy in this world is the Henri IV Dudognon Heritage Cognac. The price of this brandy can reach up to $2,000,000, with an alcohol content of 41%.
Different factors determine the price of a brandy. The most expensive brand on the list is the Henri IV Dudognon Heritage for approximately $2,000,000, while the Lecompte Secret with a price tag of around $2,500 is the cheapest.
The high production and aging process costs require brandy to sell at a greater price. Meanwhile, using crystal decanters from Lalique and Baccarat commands a large price, but a brandy housed in an old and dusty bottle is costly, too. The history of any distilled spirit does have a price, along with the name attached to it.
Lydia Martin hails from Redmond, Washington, where you’ll find some of the best cocktail bars and distilleries that offer a great mix of local drinks. She used to work as a bar manager in Paris and is a self-taught mixologist whose passion for crafting unique cocktails led her to create Liquor Laboratory. Lydia can whip up a mean Margarita in seconds!