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Cognac Old Fashioned Recipe

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Last Updated on June 12, 2023 by Leah Hall

This Cognac Old Fashioned is a great twist on the classic cocktail. Discover the complexity that cognac gives, plus lovely warmth.


We decided to incorporate cognac, a high quality brandy produced from distilled white wine into this twist on the classic Old Fashioned (which is usually made with whiskey).

Cognac Old Fashioned in rocks glass with orange peel, cognac bottle behind

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Man in maroon shirt holding Cognac Old Fashioned with orange peel on the rim

You may be thinking this cocktail sounds more on the wintery side of things, but au contraire, cognac is a all year round spirit. Cognac is a fruit based spirit produced from fermented and distilled white wine, so it is lighter than most grain based spirits like bourbon or whiskey.


Cognac Old Fashioned

Using cognac lightens up a classic old fashioned, and makes it perfect for the summer, or all year round. But, since Father’s Day is coming up, Jay thought this combo made for a great sipper on his day, and I couldn’t agree more!

Man in maroon shirt holding Cognac Old Fashioned with orange peel on the rim

We used white creme de cocoa as the sweetener in this cocktail, and it adds a bit of sweetness and caramel chocolate flavor to the mix. Instead of bitters, we used some of our Black Pepper Tincture, which adds a bit of spiciness to the drink, but just a dash more of booze. Then garnish with a brandied cherry or orange peel for a dash of citrus nose when sipping.


A Cognac Old Fashioned is a lighter version of the classic, and we hope you try this one out, and learn some about cognac below!

Man in maroon shirt holding Cognac Old Fashioned with orange peel on the rim in an aspen grove


Cognac is a type of brandy. It is usually made from Ugni Blanc grapes grown in the Cognac region of France. Because Cognac is more exclusive and rare, because of the grapes used, it is usually more expensive. 


Cognac is very versatile for mixing, and it is great in this Old Fashioned. It does taste similar to Brandy, but there may be some spiciness or depth to it that brandy doesn’t have. Cognac is twice distilled in copper pot stills and aged at least two years in French oak barrels. In this way, it ages the same way that whiskey or wine does, and most cognacs stay in the barrels longer than the minimum requirement.

Hand holding cognac bottle

Larsen Aqua Ignis Cognac

Larsen Aqua Ignis is the first cognac in the world aged in steam-toasted barrels.  Maison Larsen is using each cask made of traditional French oak plunged into hot water then toasted over hot fire, three times. This technique releases complex and fine aromas from the wood while keeping out not wanted smoky notes, tannins and acidity. The result gives intense aromas of vanilla, toasted brioche, mocha with a long and soft finish.


First, the cognac is aged in traditional oak barrels. Once extracted, they are blended and taken into “Aqua Ignis III” barrels where they will continue their ageing at an alcohol degree of 50%.


This second ageing step is what makes the difference.  Aqua Ignis III barrels are a small batch of fine grain French oak barrels that have been exposed to the triple steam toasting.  The steam-fire process used to create Aqua Ignis Cognac is proprietary.

Cognac Old Fashioned in rocks glass with orange peel, cognac bottle behind

This process makes Larsen Aqua Ignis Cognac like no other. It is also what gives it its name: “water” (aqua) and “fire” (ignis) in Latin.


The nose on the Aqua Ignis Cognac is full of chocolate and coffee notes right away. Those show up on the tongue, as well as raisin and plum notes, it also ends with a rich and nutty milk chocolate flavor. It ends with almond and more baking spice.

Maison Larsen

The Larsen firm was founded in 1926 by Jens Reidar Larsen, a Norwegian. Having become an connoisseur and driven by business sense, he bought and developed the small Cognac company of Joseph Gautier before uccessfully launching his own Larsen brand which became quickly appreciated in Norway.


He married a Frenchwoman and had two children. The eldest, Jean, took over the family business in the 1960’s and built up the Larsen brand. The third generation, Frédéric, Nicolas and Anne have now taken the reins of the family business. They have made Larsen and its trademark “Drakkar” a symbol of sophistication and quality, rooted in ancestral tradition.


In October of 2012, Rémy Cointreau announced that it signed an agreement to acquire the entire share capital of Larsen, the Vikings’ Cognac.

Brown cocktail in rocks glass with clear ice and orange peel

What is a Tincture?

A tincture is a concentrated alcohol infusion made by steeping things such as herbs and spices, fruit, flower or even vegetable in high proof alcohol (we use Everclear a lot). Tinctures can enhance the flavor of a cocktail and can also be used as an aromatic spray to add scent to the glass or top of the cocktail.

Brown cocktail in rocks glass with clear ice and orange peel

Difference between a Tincture and Bitters

A tincture is a concentrated alcohol infusion, a flavor added to a cocktail, such as black pepper tincture. And in this case a Cognac Old Fashioned. Bitters have multiple ingredients, and hence the name are bitter. Usually because of this, they have different flavors. Such as orange bitters can contain a citrus peel, spices and roots. They both add flavor, but in different ways and are both fun to play with.


Make sure to try out our Cognac French 75, too!

Man in maroon shirt holding Cognac Old Fashioned with orange peel on the rim



Other Old Fashioned Recipes


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Like this recipe? Try these below, too!

Cocktail in glass mug with handle in the snow

Cognac Hot Toddy


Peanut Butter & Jelly Old Fashioned


Other Cognac Cocktails

Brown cocktail in rocks glass with clear ice and orange peel
Yield: 1

Cognac Old Fashioned Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

This Cognac Old Fashione is a twist on the classic Old Fashioned. Lighter than the original, we sweetened it up slightly with some chocolate liqueur and black pepper tincture. A tast treat!


  • 2 ounces Aqua Ignis Cognac
  • .50 ounces white creme de cocoa
  • 3 drops black pepper tincture
  • brandied cherry or orange peel for garnish


  1. Combine Aqua Ignis cognac, creme de cocoa and tincture in mixing glass with ice. Stir for 20 seconds.
  2. Strain over ice in a rocks glass.
  3. Garnish with cherry or orange peel.
  4. Cheers!


Tinctures are easy to make, and we usually use Everclear to make ours. Combine 1 Tbsp black peppercorns with 1/4 cup Everclear and let sit for at least 3 days. Strain out peppercorns, and you have a tincture.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 184Total Fat: 2.4gCarbohydrates: 8.5gProtein: .6g

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