Lheraud Petite Champagne 1973-2003 (Cognac)


On Wednesday I reviewed a Lheraud distilled in 1970 and bottled in 2007. I really liked that one. Today I have another Lheraud from the 1970s but it’s a bit younger. However, while the 1970 was from the Fins Bois cru, this one is from Petite Champagne, which is, along with Grande Champagne, one of the premier crus of Cognac. Apparently, the brandy made from Petite Champagne grapes can be particularly fruity. All of this bodes well in theory. Let’s see how it works out in practice.

Lheraud Petite Champagne 1973-2003 (48%; Cognac; Petite Champagne; from a bottle split)

Nose: Richer than the Fins Bois 1970 with prunes, dark maple syrup, apricot jam, dried orange peel and tobacco. Thins out as it sits. Let’s see if water unlocks any more richness. Hmm there’s an herbal thing that happens and maybe there’s a bit of plum but nothing more of interest.

Palate: Not as fruity on the palate and the texture is a bit thin here too. More oak here than on the nose—though nowhere near oaky per se. Not too much change with time except it gets a little uninterestingly sweeter (brown sugar) and then it starts to get a bit drying. Gets spicier with water but not much else.

Finish: Medium. The oak is more pronounced here—not tannic at all—getting spicier as it goes (cinnamon). Less oaky more spicy with water.

Comments: Where the Fins Bois 1970 conjured fruity single malt whisky this one seems more in bourbon/armagnac territory. I don’t know if Lheraud adds sugar at all to their brandy, or how much, but this one almost tastes like it might be sweetened. Very nice but nothing so very special. The nose was my favourite part.

Rating: 85 points.

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