VALLEIN TERCINIER BOIS ORDINAIRES XO COMPTE 10 40%
Sunlights and fruits
The Bois Ordinaires (or Bois à terroir) are not the most reputed cru in the cognac game. In fact, they have always been discredited, except at the very beginning when La Rochelle was the heart of the cognac area. The soil of this cru is very specific, as the seaside mainly rests on sand. So cognacs from the Bois Ordinaires are generally said to be influenced by the Atlantic Ocean. Compte 10 means at least 10 year old. As this one is from Vallein Tercinier, it is of course way older (Stéphane Roudier-Tercinier told me that it is around 20yo). Well, it’s time to taste it !
Colour : Pale gold, olive lights. Regular medium tears.
Nose : Vanilla and strawberry at first. Clearly the wood influence here. Pinesap, vanilla stick. Then it gets very fruity notes : raisins, prunes, cherry syrup, apple juice. It smells nice. Honey and verbena infusion. Some spicy and toasted accents, like moka, coffee beans, almond milk. Hints of earl grey tea. But it remains very fruity and “sunny” : melon for sure, grenadine, strawberry. This nose reminds me a bit the Borderies, particularly the Grateaud Napoléon with its prunes/vanilla/honey notes from its nose.
Palate : Sweet texture with a nice acidity on the aftertaste. Lemon sweets, honey. Strawberry jam. A tea spoon of black olives. A bit of salted notes. The Altantic influence ? Cherry sweets. Blackcurrant juice. Nice mouth length considering its ABV (40%). The palate isn’t as delicious as the nose, but it remains very convincing.
Last Notes : Still very expressive. Some cristal clear Borderies smells. Very disturbing but very pleasant too. Acidulous notes. Back to the palate. Honey sweets. Balsamic notes. Raisins. Blackberry jam. Prunes liquor. Orange blossom. A fruity rancio is emerging from this 20yo cognac. Quite impressive. Still the wood influence, especially on pinesap, pine wood. A little freshness on parsley and thyme as a gentle au-revoir.
A great proof of the Bois Ordinaires potential. A very rich and delicate nose (88+) and a convincing palate (85). A little too unbalanced to reach the 87+ mark (which is the level of a Grosperrin Cépages in my very subjective ranking). This Bois Ordinaires XO is a true killer, considering its price, but probably not the easiest to find.
My very subjective note : 87/100