Camus – Ile de Ré – Fine Island

Review 2017-036 «Specifics» Cognac • Matured for >3 years (V.S.) in roasted oak casks • 40% Alcohol • Chill filtered • Caramel coloured • Camus • Ice de Ré • Cognac • France • Widely available • Price €40-50

STORY. In the Atlantic ocean, near west coast of France lies the small island of Ile de Ré, which translates as the Isle of the Kings. Although it lies  a fairly distance from the cognac region, it still belongs to the official Region Appellation. Most of its vineyards are now owned by the Camus family, who decided to use the unique climate to produce a maritime cognac. Accordingly, the Ugni Blanc grapes that are harvested on the island have a higher iodine content, also due to the use of seaweed for fertilization. The range consists of the Fine Island (V.S.), Double Matured (V.S.O.P.) and Cliffside Cellar (X.O.), of which the first will be evaluated here. According to the information on the cardboard box, the spirit is aged in extremely damp cellars using lightly roasted oak barrels.

TASTING NOTES

APPEARANCE. Package and bottle design is quite simple, but still stylish, kind of refreshing between the bunch of fancy big-company-cognacs. Colour of the contents is a bit too perfect golden for me.

NOSE. Fresh fruity entrance with white grapes and fruity (but not sweet) white wine. Instantaneously, the salty notes come through, which really gives this a particular twist. White wine turning into sparkling champagne. It is quite fancy! Something like being on a party among the high society. Slightly acidic woodish notes come through along with more fruitiness. C’est jolie!

TASTE. Friendly arrival that brings fruity fresh wine, sea salt, and fresh white grape juice. Also here the champagne flows, which makes the palette nicely elegant. Would you like another glass, monsieur? Well, why not, this is quite fun to drink. Woodish notes come along, and some more lightly sweet fruitiness. Bit of beach sand too.

VERDICT. Different, unique, fun! Oh, I can see myself strolling along the beaches of this island on a spring day. Experiment succeeded!

Recommended for someone that loves coastal fruity drams (e.g. Old Pulteney).

«What others say»

  • Serge Valentin @Whiskyfun.com: “A very nice nose and a pleasant palate” Score: 81-82/100
  • @Drinkhacker.com: “While it isn’t going to wow you, on the whole it’s a surprisingly drinkable Cognac, particularly at this price level” Score: B+
  • @cognacfans.com: “I find the experimenting of Camus admirable, also the taste is very difference than any other Cognac I tasted so far” Score: 8/10
  • @Winemag.com: “It’s soft and easy drinking, though it finishes quite spicy” Score: 91/100
MY SCORE
Nose
83.5 %
Taste
82.5 %
Balance
83.5 %
Depth
81 %
Price
86 %