Now even Cognac comes in an organic version


The bottle: Hardy Cognac VSOP Organic, around $55

The back story: These days, there is a booming market for organic wine, so why not a market for organic Cognac? After all, the French spirit, which hails from the Cognac region, is made from wine. So around eight years ago, Hardy, a boutique Cognac brand whose roots go back to the 19th century, decided to explore releasing an organic version.

It was a task easier said than done, explains Bénédicte Hardy, the fifth-generation family member to help steer the company. Not only must the brand source organic grapes, she explains, but it also must make sure all the barrels and equipment used in production do not come into contact with non-organic wine. “Even the box and labels are made with recyclable paper and cardboard,” she notes.

So far, the Hardy’s organic Cognac is something of a specialty product, with production of just 1,500 cases a year. But demand is “growing steadily,” Bénédicte Hardy says. “Even China is asking for it,” she adds.

What we think about it: We almost never say no to a good glass of Cognac. And Hardy makes some very tasty stuff indeed. It’s a bit difficult to pick up “organic” flavor notes per se in this Cognac, but it has a clean and mildly sweet quality that’s certainly easy on the tongue. Bénédicte Hardy says the nose is reminiscent of fresh-cut flowers in the spring.

How to enjoy it: Bénédicte Hardy suggests salmon or sushi as a natural pairing. But we’d also say this is a fine after-dinner drink, maybe with a bite of chocolate (organic, of course).



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