How French cognac was imbued with Irish spirit
French brands Hennessy and Delamain are descended from the Irish, while some new Irish whiskeys owe a lot to France
In the 18th century, Irish businessmen were very prominent in the Cognac region. Two houses are direct descendants of Irish families and many others had strong Irish connections. These are detailed by historian Louis Cullen in his book The Irish Brandy Houses of 18th-Century France (Lilliput Press).
Hennessy is well-known. The family has been involved in Cognac since 1724 and there are still several Hennessys involved. Maurice travels the world as brand ambassador, as well as selling grapes from his vineyard to Hennessy. His brother Frédéric lives in the original Hennessy homestead in Cork. The Hennessy three-star is very popular in this country. Richard Hennessy created the first XO for his friends. The current version is a real treat.