Spirit Forward: Martell Single Cru Collection

Discover how each terroir produces cognac of varying flavour profiles.

Spirit Forward is a series documenting the latest releases in the world of drinks. In this edition, we check out the latest offerings from Martell in their Single Cru Collection.

Martell is starting their 300th year strong with the latest release of the Single Cru Collection, which celebrates the beauty of terroir. Historically, the brand’s cognacs have been made with an eaux-de-vie blend from around the Cognac region. In this collection, Martell aims to focus on each “cru”—the regions in Cognac that produce grapes for winemaking. For its inaugural collection, Martell has released three specific editions that celebrate different aspects of terroir: The Discovery Edition, The Aged Edition, and The Vintage Edition.

martell single cru

The Discovery Edition

Perfect for burgeoning cognac enthusiasts who want to deepen their palatable knowledge of terroir, The Discovery Edition is an introductory series focused on three main Cognac crus: Fin Bois, Borderies, and Petite Champagne. Each bottling comprises only eaux-de-vie sourced from the specific cru, so you can truly taste the difference that each terroir reveals to you thanks to differing factors including geographic location, soil composition, climate, and exposure. Take the Martell Single Cru Fin Bois, for example, which boasts a palate of juicy fruit, which turns out vibrant and fragrant. Then, the Martell Single Cru Petite Champagne is spicy and intense with notes of warm spices and a rich nuttiness. The Martell Single Cru Borderies, on the other hand, is perhaps the most precious of the trio—partly because the Borderies Cru is the smallest Cru in Cognac, which means fewer grapes in production and a lower volume of eaux-de-vie. On the palate, the Borderies has a full mouthfeel with flavours of sweet fruit and subtle florals.

The Aged Edition

Now that you’re accustomed to the flavours of the different Cru, it’s time to bring it a step further and combine terroir with the best-in-class ageing process. The Martell Single Cru Aged Edition features two bottles: The XO Grande Champagne and XXO Borderies. These are the two most exclusive Cognac terroirs that Jean Martell himself personally picked out back in the 18th century. These bottles feature blends that come from not only a single Cru but also a selection of remarkably aged eaux-de-vie. It’s a sensorial and palatable lesson in how the ageing process plays a big part in crafting the signature flavour profile and creating that richness befitting an XO and an XXO.

The XO Grande Champagne, for instance, demonstrates a different flavour profile with older eaux-de-vie compared to younger ones—the former has notes of nuts and dried fruit with overtones of wood. Meanwhile, the XXO Borderies features eaux-de-vie at the peak of their maturity, befitting of the nuances that this terroir can provide: rich, full, with notes of luscious fruits.

The Vintage Edition

Eaux-de-vie from one terroir and only one year: the Martell Single Cru Vintage Edition pays homage to what a single year in one location can do to your cognac. Every year, a new bottling will be added to this edition, but Martell is starting strong with the Borderies 1999—a year wracked with weather challenges and low harvests. After distillation in 2000, the eaux-de-vie was then aged in fine-grained oak barrels for 23 years; this limited-edition bottling features notes of candied fruit, linden blossom, and citrus with a smooth, rich fruity palate. The Vintage Edition Borderies 1999 will only be available in extremely limited quantities.

The Discovery Edition Martell Single Cru Fins Bois and Martell Single Cru Petite Champagne are priced at RM580 per bottle while the Martell Single Cru Borderies will be priced at RM620 per bottle.

The Martell Single Cru XO Grande Champagne and Martell Single Cru XXO Borderies will be priced at RM1,440 and RM2,830 respectively. The Martell Single Cru Borderies 1999 from the Vintage Edition, will be priced at RM10,800 in limited quantities.

Find out more here.