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Girls can have their pumpkin spice lattes and salted caramel whatevers, for us, fall means it’s the perfect season (and temperature) for a rich, warming glass of one of our favorite beverages: Cognac. There’s something unexplainable that’s just a little more mature and refined about a glass of Cognac, as opposed to vodka, rum, or gin. Something about holding a snifter makes you feel like you’ve entered into the realm of the gentleman and should be surrounded by leather-bound books and mahogany while rocking a classic cardigan sweater or a pullover vest. In honor of the esteemed liquor, we’re dedicating this week’s blog to the champagne of brandy (more on that in a second) with some of our favorite facts on the rich and favored spirit: 

What Is Cognac? 

Cognac is a type of brandy, which means that it’s a distilled white wine. However, not all distilled brandies can be considered cognacs. Like champagne, Cognac holds the distinction of being made in a delineated region of France. For cognac, this area sits on the country’s Western coast. This 200,000-acre area includes the town of Cognac and its surrounding regions. There are six regions of production, dubbed the "delimited area," by French Cognac authorities. They are: Grande Champagne, Petit Champagne, Borderies, Fins Bois, Bons Bois, and Bois Ordinaires. Cognacs are blended from the distilled spirits from these six regions to achieve the perfect balance of flavor. 

Cognac must be distilled twice in copper pot stills and then is aged in French oak barrels (the barrels must be made from French oak from one of two specific forests, Limousin and Troncais) for a minimum of two years. Distilling season for Cognac ends in March, because it cannot be made with wine that has had added sulfites, giving only a short five-annual window to create this spirit annually.

A Beginner's Guide to Cognac

A Rich History

Cognac dates back to the 1600s, when wine that was exported to Holland was deemed below par. The Dutch, who had already begun distilling gin, began distilling the wine they were receiving, hence creating the first incarnation of Cognac. As the French took notice, local winemakers began distilling their own wines. Some of today’s most famous Cognac brands fate back to the 1700s, with Martell, which is the world’s oldest brand, has its history dating back to 1715, while Hennessy began in 1765, and Rémy Martin’s history stretches back to 1724.

Our Favorite Way to Enjoy It

While any glass is acceptable to enjoy the beverage nowadays, the classic Cognac glass was a snifter made in a large bulbous shape to channel heat from the hands, as the perfect drinking temperature for the beverage is claimed to be 70 degrees. Many enjoy drinking the beverage with their favorite soda mixer or stirred into a sidecar cocktail, but we love to enjoy it neat or opened with just a drop of water.  

A Beginner's Guide to Cognac: Snifter

Clarification on those Classifications

For anyone that has been confused by the VS or VSOP labels, here’s a quick and easy guide. There are three primary classifications: VS (or Very Special), VSOP (or Very Superior Old Pale), and XO (or Extra Old). VS means that the Cognac has been aged at least two years, VSOP must be aged at least four years, and XO must have been aged ten years. 

A Beginner's Guide to Cognac: Aged Barrels

Shop our complete collection at the Romeo Merino website. Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to get exclusive perks, offers, and first looks at our latest offerings.

Read more

Girls can have their pumpkin spice lattes and salted caramel whatevers, for us, fall means it’s the perfect season (and temperature) for a rich, warming glass of one of our favorite beverages: Cognac. There’s something unexplainable that’s just a little more mature and refined about a glass of Cognac, as opposed to vodka, rum, or gin. Something about holding a snifter makes you feel like you’ve entered into the realm of the gentleman and should be surrounded by leather-bound books and mahogany while rocking a classic cardigan sweater or a pullover vest. In honor of the esteemed liquor, we’re dedicating this week’s blog to the champagne of brandy (more on that in a second) with some of our favorite facts on the rich and favored spirit: 

What Is Cognac? 

Cognac is a type of brandy, which means that it’s a distilled white wine. However, not all distilled brandies can be considered cognacs. Like champagne, Cognac holds the distinction of being made in a delineated region of France. For cognac, this area sits on the country’s Western coast. This 200,000-acre area includes the town of Cognac and its surrounding regions. There are six regions of production, dubbed the "delimited area," by French Cognac authorities. They are: Grande Champagne, Petit Champagne, Borderies, Fins Bois, Bons Bois, and Bois Ordinaires. Cognacs are blended from the distilled spirits from these six regions to achieve the perfect balance of flavor. 

Cognac must be distilled twice in copper pot stills and then is aged in French oak barrels (the barrels must be made from French oak from one of two specific forests, Limousin and Troncais) for a minimum of two years. Distilling season for Cognac ends in March, because it cannot be made with wine that has had added sulfites, giving only a short five-annual window to create this spirit annually.

A Beginner's Guide to Cognac

A Rich History

Cognac dates back to the 1600s, when wine that was exported to Holland was deemed below par. The Dutch, who had already begun distilling gin, began distilling the wine they were receiving, hence creating the first incarnation of Cognac. As the French took notice, local winemakers began distilling their own wines. Some of today’s most famous Cognac brands fate back to the 1700s, with Martell, which is the world’s oldest brand, has its history dating back to 1715, while Hennessy began in 1765, and Rémy Martin’s history stretches back to 1724.

Our Favorite Way to Enjoy It

While any glass is acceptable to enjoy the beverage nowadays, the classic Cognac glass was a snifter made in a large bulbous shape to channel heat from the hands, as the perfect drinking temperature for the beverage is claimed to be 70 degrees. Many enjoy drinking the beverage with their favorite soda mixer or stirred into a sidecar cocktail, but we love to enjoy it neat or opened with just a drop of water.  

A Beginner's Guide to Cognac: Snifter

Clarification on those Classifications

For anyone that has been confused by the VS or VSOP labels, here’s a quick and easy guide. There are three primary classifications: VS (or Very Special), VSOP (or Very Superior Old Pale), and XO (or Extra Old). VS means that the Cognac has been aged at least two years, VSOP must be aged at least four years, and XO must have been aged ten years. 

A Beginner's Guide to Cognac: Aged Barrels

Shop our complete collection at the Romeo Merino website. Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to get exclusive perks, offers, and first looks at our latest offerings.

Read more

For those who want to give their skin a glow up, we’ve recommended some of our favorite tips and products to ensure you’re always feeling fresh. It’s time to upgrade your routine - skip the cheap bar soap and opt for something a little more refined. There are a host of offerings on the market tailor-made to target specific needs. Whether you want to nourish dry skin, exfoliate and de-clog your pores, or brighten your complexion, there’s a perfect product made just for you. Though you may be tempted to save money by pilfering from your girl’s beauty stash, men’s skin has different needs. With slightly thicker skin, daily shaving, and naturally higher collagen levels, our skin can benefit from products made with just us in mind. Here are some of our must-have products and tips to upgrade your grooming regimen: 

Stock Up on Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Energizing Face Wash 

For the perfect start to your day, wake up with this refreshing face wash from skincare legend, Kiehl’s. A cult favorite, this product effectively cleanses the skin while providing you with an invigorating and energizing experience. The formula has three key ingredients that revive the skin while preparing it for a comfortable shave: coffee, to energize and reduce dullness, vitamin E, to neutralize skin-damaging free radicals and moisturize, and menthol, for that skin-tingling, fresh feeling that everyone loves. 

Stay Fresh: Our Men’s Skincare and Grooming Bible: Kiehl's Skin

Commit to Routine

Make cleansing your skin part of your daily routine. Be religious about washing your face morning and night, but most importantly, always, always, always (we can’t stress this enough) be sure to cleanse your skin after a workout. This is key not only to prevent the sweat and bacteria from clogging your pores but also to remove the salt contained in sweat that can cause irritation and dehydration.

Stay Fresh: Our Men’s Skincare and Grooming Bible: Skincare Routine

Create the Perfect Shave

Take a little extra time to warm up your water to create a softer base for your razor and stock your cabinet with a high-quality shaving cream. Though there are cheap options on the market, a luxe shaving cream will prevent razor burn, ingrown hairs, and will help the overall texture and appearance of your skin. We’re partial to the Jack Black Supreme Cream Triple Cushion Shave Lather, which is known to “lift hair up and away from the skin for a smooth, close shave that leaves skin soft, hydrated, and refreshed. Three hydrating layers create a protective cushion between the skin and blade, helping reduce razor burn, irritation, and nicks for a pain-free shave.” Not only do we love it for its effect on our skin, but we also love the fact that it’s vegan and cruelty-free. When you’re all lathered up, use long, even strokes to move the razor and gently shave against the grain. Rinse after each swipe and remember to change out your blade after about five to seven uses.

Stay Fresh: Our Men’s Skincare and Grooming Bible: Men's Shave

Never Forget the Sun Screen

Because nobody has time for premature wrinkles, it’s key to always slather on the sunscreen before stepping outdoors. This quick simple step will help prevent sun damage that can lead to wrinkles, age spots, and even scarier, skin cancer. For the best protection, choose a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. For the ultimate protection, ensure that you’re wearing sun-protective clothing, such as merino wool. Not only will it help keep you cool, but its fibers also block out harmful rays from the sun.

Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to get exclusive perks, offers, and first looks at our latest offerings.

Read more

For those who want to give their skin a glow up, we’ve recommended some of our favorite tips and products to ensure you’re always feeling fresh. It’s time to upgrade your routine - skip the cheap bar soap and opt for something a little more refined. There are a host of offerings on the market tailor-made to target specific needs. Whether you want to nourish dry skin, exfoliate and de-clog your pores, or brighten your complexion, there’s a perfect product made just for you. Though you may be tempted to save money by pilfering from your girl’s beauty stash, men’s skin has different needs. With slightly thicker skin, daily shaving, and naturally higher collagen levels, our skin can benefit from products made with just us in mind. Here are some of our must-have products and tips to upgrade your grooming regimen: 

Stock Up on Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Energizing Face Wash 

For the perfect start to your day, wake up with this refreshing face wash from skincare legend, Kiehl’s. A cult favorite, this product effectively cleanses the skin while providing you with an invigorating and energizing experience. The formula has three key ingredients that revive the skin while preparing it for a comfortable shave: coffee, to energize and reduce dullness, vitamin E, to neutralize skin-damaging free radicals and moisturize, and menthol, for that skin-tingling, fresh feeling that everyone loves. 

Stay Fresh: Our Men’s Skincare and Grooming Bible: Kiehl's Skin

Commit to Routine

Make cleansing your skin part of your daily routine. Be religious about washing your face morning and night, but most importantly, always, always, always (we can’t stress this enough) be sure to cleanse your skin after a workout. This is key not only to prevent the sweat and bacteria from clogging your pores but also to remove the salt contained in sweat that can cause irritation and dehydration.

Stay Fresh: Our Men’s Skincare and Grooming Bible: Skincare Routine

Create the Perfect Shave

Take a little extra time to warm up your water to create a softer base for your razor and stock your cabinet with a high-quality shaving cream. Though there are cheap options on the market, a luxe shaving cream will prevent razor burn, ingrown hairs, and will help the overall texture and appearance of your skin. We’re partial to the Jack Black Supreme Cream Triple Cushion Shave Lather, which is known to “lift hair up and away from the skin for a smooth, close shave that leaves skin soft, hydrated, and refreshed. Three hydrating layers create a protective cushion between the skin and blade, helping reduce razor burn, irritation, and nicks for a pain-free shave.” Not only do we love it for its effect on our skin, but we also love the fact that it’s vegan and cruelty-free. When you’re all lathered up, use long, even strokes to move the razor and gently shave against the grain. Rinse after each swipe and remember to change out your blade after about five to seven uses.

Stay Fresh: Our Men’s Skincare and Grooming Bible: Men's Shave

Never Forget the Sun Screen

Because nobody has time for premature wrinkles, it’s key to always slather on the sunscreen before stepping outdoors. This quick simple step will help prevent sun damage that can lead to wrinkles, age spots, and even scarier, skin cancer. For the best protection, choose a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. For the ultimate protection, ensure that you’re wearing sun-protective clothing, such as merino wool. Not only will it help keep you cool, but its fibers also block out harmful rays from the sun.

Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to get exclusive perks, offers, and first looks at our latest offerings.

Read more