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CAMUS Extra Elegance

Review: Camus Extra Elegance  95/100
a review by Chip Dykstra (Aka Arctic Wolf)
Published December 24, 2014

CAMUS is the last of the major Cognac Houses that is entirely family run, and the House has been that way for five generations. Cyril Camus who represents the fifth generation of the Camus family currently remains in sole control of the company which currently has employees on three continents, and they are responsible for sales of cognac in almost every country of the world.

CAMUS Extra Elegance is a blend of eaux-de-vie produced primarily from the Borderies, Grande Champagne and Petite Champagne regions. The eaux-de-vie which make up the blend are all subject to a long aging process in cool, damp cellars which is said to allow the final blended Extra Elegance to reach its full quality.

c-IMAGE CAM ELEGANCE EXTRA 70CL BOTTLEIn the Bottle 5/5

According to the CAMUS website, the Extra Elegance carafe was developed by Cyril CAMUS in order to create a sleek design that would showcase the cognac it protects. In 2007, the design was recognized with a Pentaward for remarkable packaging design. The bottle shape and the brushed steel stopper and neck make this carafe a masculine departure from the tear drop design used for the CAMUS XO Elegance and the Camus XO Bordieries Cognac.

In the Glass 9.5/10

The Extra Elegance displays a rich bronze colour in the glass, and when I tilt and twirl that glass I see that the spirit is slightly thickened and lays fat legs back down the side of the glass which travel lazily back down into the spirit. The  initial nose brings forward a rich melding of butterscotch, oak and fresh fruit which smells truly delicious. Fine oak spices, green grapes and hints of butterscotch, maple and apricot brandy tease the breezes above the glass along with bits of vanilla, orange peel spice and nutty almond.

As the glass breathes, the oak pushes forward bringing smells of freshly sanded oak and hints of white pepper and spicy sap upward into the air above the glass.

In the Mouth 57/60

The cognac seems to me to be almost perfectly balanced between the spicy fine oak, the sweet butterscotch, and the fruity green grape flavours. In fact it is very hard to separate one aspect of flavour from the others. Perhaps the oak dominates just a little as the fine oak spices seem to heat the mouth and leave it glowing with each sip. However, it is also true that a burst of fresh green grape goodness seems to linger within that oaken spiciness and there is just enough butterscotch sweetness to bring balance; but not much as to make the spirit cloying in any way. Perhaps I will just call this spirit a wonderful spicy fine oak-green grape-butterscotch elixir, and let your own imagination take flight from there.

In the Throat 14/15

A full fifteen minutes after swallowing my last sip from my sample glass and my throat is still glowing with spice, and my palate still hold lingering flavours of fresh grape and lightly sweet butterscotch.

The Afterburn 9.5/10

The Camus Extra Elegance is simply outstanding. The spicy oak is firmly imprinted within its flavour profile, however the oak does not overwhelm the spirit. Other flavours within the Cognac join in such that a complex, yet well-balanced elixir is created. As my final score of 95/100 attests, I think the spirit is wonderful!

You may click this link to read some of my other Brandy and Cognac Reviews

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My Final Score is out of 100 and you may (loosely) interpret the score as follows:

0-25     A spirit with a rating this low would actually kill you.
26-49   Depending upon your fortitude you might actually survive this.
50 -59  You are safe to drink this…but you shouldn’t.
60-69   Substandard swill which you may offer to people you do not want to see again.
70-74    Now we have a fair mixing spirit. Accept this but make sure it is mixed into a cocktail.
75-79    You may begin to serve this to friends, again probably still cocktail territory.
80-84    We begin to enjoy this spirit neat or on the rocks. (I will still primarily mix cocktails)
85-89    Excellent for sipping or for mixing!
90-94    Definitely a primary sipping spirit, in fact you may want to hoard this for yourself.
95-97.5 The Cream of the Crop
98+       I haven’t met this bottle yet…but I want to.

Very loosely we may put my scores into terms that you may be familiar with on a Gold, Silver, and  Bronze medal  scale as follows:

70 – 79.5    Bronze Medal (Recommended only as a mixer)
80 – 89.5     Silver Medal (Recommended for sipping and or a high quality mixer)
90 – 95         Gold Medal (Highly recommended for sipping and for sublime cocktails.)
95.5+            Platinum Award (Highest Recommendation)

 
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