GSN Review: HINE Antique XO 100th Anniversary 1920-2020 Cognac

Celebrating a century of creation since the very first blend of Antique XO in 1920 by Georges Hine, the House of HINE announced this year, the U.S. release of HINE Antique XO 100th Anniversary 1920-2020 Cognac, an exceptionally rare, limited edition cuvée blended with a 100-year-old eau-de-vie from vintage 1920. Crafted by veteran cellar master, Eric Forget, only 1920 hand-numbered decanters were produced, with 270 allocated for sale in the U.S.

Located on the banks of the Charente River in the heart of France’s Cognac region, the HINE House is internationally acclaimed for its blends, vintage and extra old cognacs. For more than 250 years and six generations of Hine family leadership, the iconic cognac house has upheld founder, Thomas Hine’s commitment to producing cognac made in a timeless style through vigilant grape growing in Cognac’s crus, calculated wood selection and blending precision in the cellar.

Preserved in glass demi-johns for a century in the Réserve du Paradis cellar beneath the HINE House, the 1920 eau-de-vie enriches the original Antique XO with boundless richness and delicate floral notes. The balance of the cuvée features 40 hand-selected cognacs, all aged for a minimum of 20 years and sourced exclusively from Grande Champagne.

“What a thrill and an honor it was to take on the responsibility of blending such a momentous expression of HINE’s past and present,” said Eric Forge, HINE Cellar Master. “The enduring personality, flavor and aromatic nuances of the 1920 eau-de-vie, and the natural ease with which it blended so seamlessly with Antique XO’s eau-de-vies is truly remarkable, and a testament to the Hine family’s lasting legacy of excellence.”

HINE Antique XO 100th Anniversary (80 proof)
Appearance: Dark orange.
Aroma: Fruity, honeyed, garden-like and lightly oaked. Notes of butter, vanilla, butterscotch and brown sugar.
Taste: Delicate grape flavors meld with the cask, creating a light yet poignant expression of the spirit. Exceptionally smooth and balanced.
Finish: Medium long, with sweet lingering notes where the grape spirit becomes more apparent.
Overall: A beautiful creation. The perfect melding of history and distillation. Do not pass up the opportunity to taste this amazing blend if you have the chance.
GSN Rating: A+++

For more information go to: HINE Cognac

GSN Spirited News: October 27th 2020 Edition

Palm Bay International and Buffalo, New York-based Tommyrotter Distillery have collaborated on Tommyrotter Napa Valley Heritance Cask Straight Bourbon Whiskey, a 95-proof, four-grain Bourbon consisting of corn, wheat, rye, and malted barley, finished in Cabernet Sauvignon casks from Napa Valley for three months. A permanent addition to the Tommyrotter range, Napa Valley Heritance Cask is launching across New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania, retailing at $50 a 750-ml.

San Francisco-based Hotaling & Co. is introducing Hine Antique XO 100th Anniversary 1920-2020 Cognac. A rare cuvée blended with a 100-year-old eau-de-vie from vintage 1920—with the balance of the blend featuring Grande Champagne Cognacs aged a minimum of 20 years—the luxury offering is limited to 270 hand-numbered decanters in the U.S., priced at $300 apiece. Made by cellar master Eric Forget, it commemorates the first blend of Hine Antique XO in 1920 by Georges Hine.

Gonzalez Byass is launching Fundador Light in the U.S. Debuting in California, Florida, Illinois, Nevada, Washington, New York, and Oregon, the 28% abv brandy-based spirit retails at $14 a 750-ml. and is intended to appeal to “current Fundador consumers and a new generation looking for a lighter option to traditional Spanish Brandies,” according to Nicolas Bertino, CEO and country manager of Gonzalez Byass USA.

Manassas, Virginia’s KO Distilling has announced Bottled-in-Bond Distiller’s Reserve Straight Bourbon whiskey. The 50% abv spirit is distilled from a mash of 70% corn, 20% wheat, and 10% malted barley, all sourced from Virginia. The new whiskey is KO’s first bonded release and joins the company’s portfolio alongside Battle Standard 142 gin and the Bare Knuckle whiskey line, which includes unaged, rye, wheat, and Bourbon whiskies. KO Distilling’s new bottled-in-bond whiskey will be available in November in Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Maryland for around $70.

Diageo has announced the latest release in the Singleton line of single malt Scotch whiskies. The new release was distilled at Glen Ord and matured for 38 years in a combination of ex-Bourbon, ex-Sherry, and new American oak casks before bottling at 49.6% abv. This limited release was drawn from eight casks and is rolling out now around the world for a suggested retail price of roughly $2,760 (£2,100.) 

Former Four Roses master distiller Jim Rutledge has partnered with Blue Run Spirits to introduce Blue Run 13-year-old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. Retailing at $170 a 750-ml., the newcomer is at 113 proof and is rolling out to the Kentucky (RNDC) and Georgia (Savannah Distributing) markets this month in an edition of 2,600 bottles. Rutledge will have more whiskies coming under the Blue Run banner, a new company formed by former Nike and Facebook veterans, among others.

Edrington has unveiled the latest expression in The Macallan Fine & Rare Collection—a vintage Scotch distilled in 1993. The new whisky matured for 27 years in Sherry-seasoned American oak and is bottled at 50.2% abv. Only 256 bottles are available worldwide, retailing at a suggested price of $18,000 a 750-ml. The Fine & Rare Collection now includes 57 vintages from 1926 to 1993.

Diageo has expanded Smirnoff Spicy Tamarind into 15 new markets across the U.S. The 35% abv vodka is sweet and spicy, according to the company, and initially found popularity in Mexico before expanding into the U.S. It retails for around $13 a 750-ml. and will be a permanent addition in Texas, California, Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, and New Mexico; and a limited release in Arkansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Kansas, New Jersey, Massachusetts, North and South Dakota, Louisiana, Maryland, Wisconsin, Vermont, Georgia, and Nevada.

Chicago-based cocktail mixers company Zing Zang has unveiled a range of spirits-based RTD cocktails across 20 U.S. states, with further distribution to follow. Including Bloody Mary, Margarita, and Bourbon Whiskey Sour expressions, the Zing Zang RTDs are at 9% abv and retail at $13 a 4-pack of 12-ounce slim cans.

Woody Creek Distillers of Basalt, Colorado is launching a Limited Edition Wheated Bourbon. The new label has a mashbill of 70% Colorado corn, 15% Colorado barley, and 15% Colorado wheat aged 6 years in 100% American oak barrels. The Limited Edition Wheated Bourbon will be available in Colorado and a few other select markets for the holiday season, retailing at $60 a 750-ml. Woody Creek’s spirits portfolio includes a Potato Vodka, Roaring Fork Gin, Colorado Bourbon, and Colorado 100% Straight Rye.

Niche Imports, part of Marussia Beverages, is now the importer for Finnish vodka Koskenkorva. The 40% abv spirit is distilled from barley in its namesake village in Western Finland. The Koskenkorva distillery is run 100% on bioenergy, primarily provided by barley husks. Koskenkorva vodka will be available across the U.S. and will retail between $20 and $23, depending on the market.

Courtesy of Shanken News Daily