Brands Report 2015: Brandy

06 January, 2015

We might as well call the brandy category the cognac category. 

About 80% of the top brandy sellers in our polled bars are within earshot of the Charente in south west France.

Hennessy is the daddy of the cognac family and the godfather of the international premium brandy category. In almost a quarter of the bars polled in the Brands Report Hennessy was named the top seller and in just under a fifth of bars it was Rémy Martin. 

Hennessy has maintained top position in our brandy Best Sellers list every year since we started in 2010 and Rémy Martin has played bridesmaid in each of the past three years.

At the premium end of the brandy business, they appear to have a stranglehold.

Bar l’Apereau in Belgium, Punch Room at London Edition, Hyde & Seek Gastro Bar in Bangkok, Linje Tio in Stockholm and Ohla Boutique Bar in Barcelona all say Hennessy is their top selling brandy.

According to Rémy Cointreau’s latest results, Rémy Martin’s sales volume is down-trading in double-digits but it remains a brandy renowned for its luxury expressions and to many it is the go-to XO cognac brand.

Now that less of its super-premium product is flooding into the drinks cabinets of Chinese officialdom, we might well expect other high-end accounts in Europe to have better access to its stocks.  

This year Pierre Ferrand is surprisingly high up the list at number three, driving a wedge between the traditional big four, with Martell and Courvoisier in fourth and fifth.

Pierre Ferrand’s Ancestrale was named Best Cognac at Drinks International’s International Spirits Challenge 2014 and the brand is the top seller in 15% of our polled bars – it is also the buzz brandy brand, with almost a fifth of bars attesting to its recent popularity. 

28 Hongkong Street in Singapore describes Pierre Ferrand as a brand selected because of its “inspiring liquid, appealing packaging, compelling narrative and competitive pricing”.

Of the non-cognacs, Armagnac Tariquet has built a reputation for quality at affordable prices, while Torres is making a push in the off-trade with its oaky Spanish brandies.

Metaxa also makes its debut and perhaps unexpectedly is the top seller in a few of the world’s best bars.  


We spoke to the World’s 50 Best Bars for this poll but in order to have a broader set of results we widened the net to include responses from a total of 100 of the top bars in the world - as voted for by our World's 50 Best Bars Academy.

We asked bar owners and head bartenders from these 100 top bars to name the Best Selling and Top Trending brands behind their bars. For more information about our methodology see here.

Day by day we will take you through the overall Best Selling and Top Trending spirits, and into the categories - from tequila, gin, vodka, rum, liqueurs, Scotch, World Whiskies, Brandy, aperitifs and digestifs, champagne, beer, water and tonic water to the best brands for cocktails.

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