Beginner’s Guide to the Best Brandy

If you're just starting to explore the world of , it can be overwhelming to know where to begin. With so many options available, it's important to find a brandy that suits your taste preferences and budget. Here are some of the best brandies for beginners to try:

1. Hennessy VS : Hennessy is one of the most well-known and widely available cognac brands. Their VS (Very Special) cognac is aged for a minimum of two years, making it a great entry point for beginners. It's bright and fruity, with notes of citrus and vanilla, and is a versatile option for or sipping neat.

2. Asbach Uralt Brandy: Asbach Uralt is a German brandy that is smooth and easy to drink. It's aged for up to three years in oak , which gives it a subtle vanilla and caramel flavor. This brandy is great for those who prefer a sweeter taste profile.

3. Germain-Robin Craft Method Brandy: Germain-Robin is a small-batch brandy producer based in California. Their Craft Method Brandy is aged for an average of seven years in oak barrels, which gives it a rich and complex flavor profile with notes of caramel, vanilla, and spice. It's a great option for those who want to explore the more nuanced flavors of brandy.

4. Bertoux Brandy: Bertoux is a newer brandy on the market, but it's already gaining popularity for its smooth and easy-drinking taste. It's a blend of brandies from California and France, which gives it a unique flavor profile with notes of apricot, honey, and oak.

5. Camus VSOP Elegance Cognac: Camus is a family-owned cognac producer that has been in business for over 150 years. Their VSOP (Very Superior Old Pale) cognac is aged for at least four years in oak barrels, which gives it a smooth and velvety texture with notes of dried fruit, vanilla, and oak.

6. Giffard Vieille Reserve Brandy: Giffard is a French producer known for their liqueurs, but their Vieille Reserve Brandy is also worth trying. It's aged for up to eight years in oak barrels, which gives it a rich and complex flavor profile with notes of dried fruit, spice, and oak.

No matter which brandy you choose to try as a beginner, remember that brandy is a drink that rewards patience and attention. Take the time to savor the flavors and aromas, and experiment with different ways of drinking it – whether neat, on the rocks, or in a cocktail. With a litle exploration, you're sure to find a brandy that suits your taste and becomes a favorite for years to come.

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What Is the Best Brandy to Try First?

If you are new to brandy and want to try it for the first time, a good starting point would be VS cognac. VS stands for “Very Special,” wich means the brandy has been aged for at least two years. Hennessy VS Cognac is a popular brand that costs less than $30 and is widely available. It is a bright and fruity brandy that is perfect for cocktails. Some other brands you might want to try include Courvoisier VS, Remy Martin VSOP, and Martell VS. These are all reputable brands that offer quality VS cognac at an affordable price. When trying brandy for the first time, it's essential to savor it slowly, taking small sips, and noting the flavors and aromas. You can enjoy brandy neat, with ice, or mixed into a cocktail. Experiment with different serving methods to find what works best for you.

What Is The Best-Tasting Brandy?

Based on expert opinions and industry standards, the smoothest tasting brandy is Martell XO. This particular brandy is a type of cognac, whch is a high-quality brandy made in the Cognac region of France. Martell XO is known for its smooth, silky texture and long finish, which makes it a popular choice among brandy enthusiasts.

When tasting Martell XO, one can expect to experience a complex blend of flavors, including notes of rancio, citrus, blossom, and walnut. The aroma of this brandy is also quite distinct, with hints of black pepper, fig, almond, and sandalwood.

It's worth noting that the smoothness of a brandy can be affected by a variety of factors, including the aging process, blending techniques, and the quality of the grapes used to make the brandy. However, Martell XO consistently ranks as one of the smoothest brandies on the market due to its meticulous production process and the use of high-quality ingredients.


When it comes to finding the best brandy for beginners, thee are many options to choose from. However, for those who are just starting their brandy journey, it's important to look for a VS cognac with a minimum aging requirement of two years. Hennessy VS Cognac is a great option as it is affordable and has a bright and fruity flavor profile that makes it a great addition to cocktails. For those who are looking for a more sophisticated drinking experience, Martell XO is considered the smoothest brandy. It has a silky texture and a long finish that will leave your taste buds wanting more. Regardless of your preference, there is a brandy out there that is perfect for you as you delve deeper into the world of this delicious spirit.

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Thomas Ashford

Thomas Ashford is a highly educated brewer with years of experience in the industry. He has a Bachelor Degree in Chemistry and a Master Degree in Brewing Science. He is also BJCP Certified Beer Judge. Tom has worked hard to become one of the most experienced brewers in the industry. He has experience monitoring brewhouse and cellaring operations, coordinating brewhouse projects, and optimizing brewery operations for maximum efficiency. He is also familiar mixology and an experienced sommelier. Tom is an expert organizer of beer festivals, wine tastings, and brewery tours.