Now in its sixth year, the Bartenders' Brand Award is our annual product testing - by bartenders, for bartenders. First up in our serialised results is the top-five products in the brandy category.
Cognacs dominated our brandy tasting at the BBAs 2023, with two heavyweights of the French region taking the top two spots in the category.
Rémy Martin Tercet was our winner, with 41/50 on taste plus high-scoring silver medals in design and value for money. Judges said it had a balance between oak-aged character and freshness.
Hennessey XO also took 41/50, with judges remarking on its deep fl avours – oak and ripe fruit being the most dominant. The XO took the same total points as Rémy Martin Tercet, but lost out on tie-breaker – the value for money score.
Hennessey was priced at rrp £160, compared to Rémy Martin at £99. Bisquit & Dubouche VSOP, another cognac, completed the brandy podium. It took gold on taste (“great fruit, rich chocolate flavours, a long finish”) with 41/50 and was considered “a great product for the price point”, scoring 21/25 on value for money.
Rémy Martin 1738 Accord Royal didn’t hit the heights of the aforementioned on the taste measure (though was noted for its long finish), but was considered the product that offered best value for money, priced as it is around £45.
The only non-cognac brandy to make our top five – Torres Alta Luz Cristalino - took silver on taste and design and gold on value for money.
The Bartenders' Brand Awards follows a three-step process to mirror buying behaviour, with each product blind-tasted, judged on value for money and by design. For more on the methodology behind the BBAs, read more here.