What Is Louis XIII Cognac and Why Is It $2,000 a Bottle?

You may have heard rappers such as T-Pain sing of “Louie Tres” (one-fifty a shot/three for you and three for me). He’s right on the price; Louis XIII runs about $150 a shot in bars and restaurants, but if you buy it in bulk, you’ll be getting it for about $2,000 a bottle. Just don’t get it at Bev-Mo, where a measley 50 ml bottle (one shot) will run you a ridiculous $439 bucks. It pays to shop around.

So what is this magical elixir and why does it cost more than most lawyers make in a week?

First off, Louis XIII, crafted by Remy Martin, is a cognac blend, which is comprised of some cognacs that are more than 100 years old. Cognacs are a type of brandy, made from grapes, but a far cry from wines, both red and white. Like champagne, cognacs must be made in the Cognac region of French to earn their name. It’s essentially a white wine that’s distilled twice, then aged in barrels of varying types, which give the cognac its caramel color. It gets its name from the French king, who didn’t actually imbibe the cognac, but rather ruled France when the Remy Martin family settled in the Cognac region.

Now why is it so expensive? Well, it’s old. As I mentioned, the oldest elements of the blend have been held onto for over a hundred years, and the younger ones are decades and decades old. Holding on to something for these periods of time (especially in a controlled environment) takes hard work and money. Because it’s old, there isn’t much of it. Production is controlled by the market and by French agencies, so there’s only so much of this stuff to go around. As supply goes down, price goes up.

It’s also expensive because of its handsome bottle and presentation case. The bottle is made of hand-blown Baccarat crystal, which runs for about $100 bucks on its own on eBay.

So how does it taste? Buy a bottle and find out.

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