Brands Report 2020: Cognac

Elevated to its own category in the Brands Report, the new cognac list still has a familiar order.

Hennessy is impossible to dislodge from its thrown - it is the only brand in the history of this report to top its table 11 years in a row. At more than 7m 9-litre cases globally, this brand makes up 40% of the cognac sales and is almost three times the size of the next biggest brand. And though the bar world has a soft spot for the small and the crafty, there’s no getting around Hennessy’s ubiquitous appeal. Offering the gamut of styles and inhabiting a range of price positions, it quenches the thirst for brandy cocktails or more considered sipping. In almost three quarters of bars, Hennessy is among the top three brands used. In more than a third, Hennessy is what bartenders reach for first. It’s also the trending cognac, which bodes well for the Moët Hennessey/Diageo brand next year.

Rémy Martin, which is exclusively made from Grand and Petit Champagne Crus, was found to be the go-to in 17% of bars that sold cognac and a top-three choice in almost two thirds. Pernod’s Martell was almost as likely to be the house pour, but half as likely to be among our bars’ supporting cast.

Courvoisier was a top-three choice in a third of bars but the house cognac in less than 10%. The brand has always been a friend of the global bar trade, through the work of its impressive until-recently ambassador Rebecca Asseline.

Pierre Ferrand, which for four years looked to be the only brand to compete with Hennessey in this channel, has dropped back to fifth. Whether that's a quirk of this year's sample, or the first sigh of the other big cognacs fighting back, we'll see next year. This maison remains the house in 10% of our polled bars and a top-tree pick in a little less than a third. There's a big drop from fifth to sixth and the other cognac brands in the list.



The results of this report are the culmination of a questionnaire of 106 bars around the world, each cherry-picked to take part based on their performance in global bar awards. We aim to find out not only which brands sell best but also what’s trending. These two data sets give us an insight into the brands that are doing the most volume and the brands that are hot right now.

To read more on the methodology of the Brands Report click here.