Dusse vs Hennessy – Comparing the Premium Cognacs

Connoisseurs of wine are often confused when deciding which is better; when it comes to Dusse vs Hennessy. They both fall in the category of premium cognac, and although both have a major fan following, there are fundamental differences between them.

Hennessy is an ancient brand with a rich historical background. The fact that it is still popular after so many years is proof of the quality of this liquor.

On the contrary, Dusse is a new company that made its way into the light in 2012 and quickly acquired popularity. Now that your interest is piqued, read the article below to learn in complete depth the debate of Dusse vs Hennessy.

History and Origin

Dusse

dusse

The inception of Dusse Cognac was because of the initiative of Sovereign Brands, although the mastermind behind the creation of this unique blend was Michel Casavecchia.

He founded Dusse in 2012 and retained ownership for some time before handing it over to Bacardi and famous pop artist Jay-Z. Now Sovereign Brands, Bacardi, and Jay-Z have joint control over Dusse.

Experts carefully manufacture Dusse liquor at the Château de Cognac in France. This is a 200-year-old property, which symbolizes one of the most ancient distilleries for making cognac.

Since its set up in France 200 years ago, it has successfully produced premium cognac. This is where Michel Casavecchia first concocted Dusse.

Hennessy

hennessy

Richard Hennessy, a man of Irish origin serving in King Louis XV’s army, was the founder of Hennessy Cognac in 1765.

After serving in the army, he retired to Cognac in France, where he started creating and selling brandy to the UK, Ireland, and later the United States.

In 1813 James Hennessy, Richard Hennessy’s son officially named the company Jas Hennessy & Co. He also selected Jean Fillioux as the Master Blender for his company.

This position has since belonged to a member of Fillioux’s family, lasting longer than 250 years and eight successive generations.

By the 1840s, Hennessy was at the forefront of the global brandy market, and it has retained this status since then. It now sells around 70 million bottles of cognacs every year, comprising 60% of the cognac market in America.

Basic Ingredients – Dusse vs. Hennessy

There is hardly any difference in the primary ingredients of both companies since they use premium quality Eaux de Vie removed from Ugni Blanc grapes, commonly called white grapes.

Additionally, the companies source their grapes from Fins Bois, Borderies, Petit Champagne, and Grand Champagne since only then can they label their product cognac.

Thus, as far as main ingredients go, there isn’t much variation in both brands.

Production Process

Making Cognac is a complex and lengthy process. It utilizes Ugni White grapes that farmers locally cultivate in France.

These grapes undergo different steps after the farmers carefully pluck them from the mother plant to their transformation into exceptional quality cognac.

When you consider the production process in Dusse vs Hennessy contrast, it is mostly similar involving the following steps.

Pressing

After carefully harvesting the grapes, manufacturers press them to let the juice ooze out and undergo natural fermentation. They refrain from adding chemicals like sulfur dioxide or sugar to boost this process.

First Distillation

After fermentation, the manufacturers pour the liquid into pot stills present inside large brick kilns. Each pot still can contain 660 gallons of liquor. This equals 3000 bottles worth of wine approximately.

Then the experts carefully raise the temperature of the brick kilns and maintain it between 173°F (78.3°C) and 212°F (100°C) until the mixture produces vapors of alcohol which separate from the rest of the liquid and are collected elsewhere.

The manufacturers then pass the alcohol vapors into the condenser coil which liquefies them forming a rudimentary mixture called “brouillis.” Broullis has 30% ABV content.

Second Distillation

In local jargon, people call this process “bonne chauffe.” It involves heating the brouillis a second time for a specific duration so that the best part of the liquid (heart) separates from the remainder (head and tails).

The head part of the distillate is too potent, making it dangerous for consumption, while the tail part barely contains any alcohol.

This remainder of the mixture undergoes distillation multiple times and is eventually used only in blending.

Casking

The manufacturers pour the liquid into oak casks, which they keep in enormous damp warehouses.

For the initial one or two years, they accumulate the liquor in new oak casks. The duration of storage depends on the desired level of Tannin.

Newly harvested oak bears the strongest Tannin, so the manufacturers leave the liquor in new casks for a longer time to let it fully absorb.

Aging and Bottling

The liquor is then shifted to older casks, which go in storage for different durations, allowing the cognac to age.

Once the desired age is achieved, and the liquor develops the right flavor and aroma, experts pour it into bottles and send it to the market for sale. This step differs in the production of Dusse vs Hennessy.

The Dusse VSOP undergoes natural aging for around four and a half years, while the Dusse XO ages for at least ten years.

On the contrary, the Hennessy VSOP and XO, both mature for four years in casks of French Oak before they are ready for sale.

Color Difference – Dusse Vs Hennessy

color difference

The colors of both beverages can vary depending on the flavor. The Dusse VSOP, which ages for four and half years, has a lustrous shine and a mix of copper, and amber color. Likewise, the Dusse XO has a dark mahogany tint or an intense shade of amber.

However, Hennessy VSOP ranges from a light color to a rich copper shade. And Hennessy XO has the same amber color, but it appears deeper and more opaque.

Flavor and taste – Dusse vs Hennessy

Experts claim that Château de Cognac Dusse VSOP offers a wide range of flavors in every sip. It delivers a stimulating mix of rich cinnamon and the intense taste of wood.

Some people can also detect the revitalizing essence of flowers in a sip of Dusse VSOP. Others claim that the diversity of its palate also supplies subtle hints of dried fruits, honey, spices, and almonds.

Hennessy offers a slightly different flavor palate.

The Hennessy Privilege VSOP bears a unique combination of fruit like apricot and apple mixed with hints of condiments like cinnamon and clove.

People also declare that Hennessy presents flavors of vanilla, oak, and candied fruit in combination with cinnamon and clove in some varieties.

Alcohol Content – Dusse vs Hennessy

There isn’t the slightest variation in the alcohol content of Dusse vs Hennessy. Each bottle of Hennessy and Dusse contains 40% ABV (Alcohol by volume), which is comparatively high.

Hence, you must be careful in drinking these brands of cognac to prevent any damage to your health. It is best to enjoy them occasionally and in a small amounts.

Dusse vs Hennessy – Varieties

varieties

This is where the main difference between Dusse vs. Hennessy comes in. Since Hennessy has persisted for the past two hundred years, it has managed to dole out several varieties of liquor to satisfy the taste of each member of its vast clientele.

In addition to the standard Hennessy VSOP, the company has numerous other varieties. These are given below.

  • Hennessy V.S
  • Hennessy X.O
  • Hennessy Master Blender’s selection
  • Richard Hennessy
  • Hennessy Paradis Imperial
  • Hennessy Timeless
  • Hennessy Black
  • Hennessy Classivm
  • Privilége V.S.O.P
  • Hennessy X.X.O
  • Hennessy Paradis
  • James Hennessy
  • Hennessy 8
  • Hennessy Ellipse
  • Hennessy Pure White
  • Hennessy Fine de Cognac

On the contrary, Dusse is a relatively new brand, and so it has produced only two varieties which are:

  • Dusse VSOP
  • Dusse XO.

Dusse Vs Hennessy – Prices

This area offers another prominent difference between Dusse vs Hennessy because the same volume of liquor from Dusse is cheaper than Hennessy. The prime reason for this difference is that Dusse offers lesser variety and requires a longer time for aging.

In comparison, the price of Hennessy XO is $230 per bottle, while the same-sized bottle of Dusse XO costs around $250. To better understand the price variations refer to the table below.

Serial No Type Volume Price in dollars
1 Dusse VSOP 750ml 59.99
2 Dusse VSOP 375 ml 30.79
3 Hennessy VSOP 750ml 50.99
4 Hennessy VS 750ml 38.99
5 Hennessy VS 375ml 19.99

Packaging

Apart from the unique taste and aroma, an additional aspect of the two brands that consumers love is their focus on packaging.

Both Dusse and Hennessy sell different varieties of liquor in custom-made glass bottles with a variety of eye-catching designs.

Dusse

Dusse XO comes in an exceptional black-colored bottle with a lustrous finish that experts have shaped like a bell. Adorning the body is the silver Cross of Lorraine, a symbol of bravery and honor among the French.

Hennessy

Likewise, Hennessy XO comes in a transparent glass bottle, which has intricate carvings at the periphery contrasting beautifully with the dark liquid inside. The bottle has the shape of a pear with the company’s logo on the front.