Drink Life Beverages

Cognac Vs. Bourbon: What’s The Difference?

While cognac and bourbon may look similar, they differ significantly in taste, color, where they are made,

While there are many differences between Cognac and Bourbon, the main difference is what they are made

Cognac is made from distilled white wine, and bourbon is from grains like corn and barley

However, if you look closely, you will notice cognac is darker brown while bourbon carries a more

You get a more complex flavor profile from barrel aging, but you will always notice stone fruit (

Bourbon shares some of these notes like citrus and spice, but most bourbon does not offer fruity

With bourbon, you will likely taste a deeper flavor profile consisting of toffee, malt, and vanilla

The flavor profile varies among different bourbon types and depends on the grain mash and the barrel

Bourbons like rye bourbons will also have a different flavor profile because of the high rye content

Cognac will have a sweeter smell due to the fruitiness in the notes, and bourbon will have

Cognac is a type of brandy, but only specific brandy can be considered cognac

Brandy is made using wine or fermented fruit mash, with the most popular being grape or apple

The grapes that are cultivated in the cognac region can be grown in Bons Bois, Borderies, Bois

The spirit is distilled twice using copper stills and aged in wooden barrels, usually French oak barrels,

Cognac can only be distilled with wine free of sulfites, a preservative

Because the wine does not have sulfites, it will not keep its quality as the weather warms,

Different levels of aged cognac depend on how long they are aged

The next level is VSOP (Very Superior Old Pale), aged four to twelve years and normally sipped

XO (Extra Old) cognac is aged from twenty to thirty-five years and is highly recommended if you

Napoleon is more affordable than XO but higher quality than the VSOP as it is aged ten

Cognac dates back to the 16th century when dutch settlers would visit France in search of fine

They would dilute the brandy with water to make it taste like wine again

It was not until the 17th century that the double distillation process began

It made way for any wine to be turned into eau di vie, so it could be

Today, the exportation of cognac is massive, reaching over 150 countries

For a long time, cognac was a drink for the older generation of business people

However, the younger generation is starting to appreciate classic spirits as times change

Bourbon is made using fermented grain mash, made up of different grains

This is why you may sometimes hear bourbon referred to as bourbon whiskey

Some bourbon distilleries are located in Bourbon County, Kentucky, because it is abundant in limestone water, giving

The distillation process for bourbon starts with a mash bill, the recipe of grains used for the

At this point, yeast and mash from a previous distillation are added, and the mixture is strained

When Bourbon reaches 80 to 125 proof, it is placed in new charred oak barrels for at least two

Although there doesn’t appear to be an inventor of bourbon, bourbon’s roots are dug deep

Bourbon was brought to Kentucky by the early American settlers

The settlers brought stills to make whiskey for social events and special occasions such as weddings

This whisky was not aged in barrels and was sometimes flavored with fruit so that the spirit

Early bourbon wasn’t sold in bottles because bottles were too expensive

Instead, saloons would buy whiskey by the barrel, and customers would bring their containers to fill

Kentucky native, George Gavin Brown, started his own bourbon business in 1870

So, with the help of his brother, he bought the bourbon barrels directly from the distilleries and

However, to save money, sellers would mix the whiskey with other spirits and flavorings and brand it

This scheme engulfed the whiskey market and led many consumers buying cheap whisky to think they were

Because of this, friction between the distilleries and the sellers of this knock-off bourbon grew

This requires whiskey to be aged and bottled according to a set of legal regulations

However, in the 1990s, super-premium bourbons were introduced, and sales began to increase

Today, bourbon is extremely popular with many brands and variations

  Cognac is made from grapes cultivated in the Cognac region of France, while bourbon is made from

Some people prefer the fruity notes of cognac, while others prefer the smokiness of bourbon

While Hennessy and bourbon share some of the same profiles, these two spirits taste nothing alike

Hennessy has a fruity profile with mellow oak notes and hints of spice and chocolate

While bourbon contains oak notes, you are unlikely to taste fruitiness and are more likely to taste