VSOP or Very Superior Old Pale
The expression dates back to 1817, when King George IV asked the House of HENNESSY for a cognac made without the additives used at the time (sugar, caramel) and called it Very Superior Old Pale. Very quickly, this term became a reference in all Cognac houses.
To benefit from this appellation, the youngest eau-de-vie used in the blend must have aged for at least 4 years in casks. As always, depending on the desire of the Master Blender, a VSOP can very often reach an average age higher than the minimum required.
A VSOP cognac tends to be sweeter, rounder than a VS cognac, with notes of oak and light spices. This category of cognac has become a favorite of mixologists in the creation of their cocktails. Indeed, a VSOP will keep the power of the alcohol while having already a beautiful aromatic palette. It is even possible to drink it neat or on the rocks.
This category of cognac can also use the terms "Reserve", "Old", "Rare" and "Royal".