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Wine/Jules Duret Cognac:Collectible and/or drinkable?


We found this bottle 6 months ago in my late father's pantry unopened. It was in a very nice box but it was thrown away in the move. The bottle has what appears to be bubbles in the glass (not in the liquid!) at first I thought it was shrink wrapped or something but it is definitely part of the glass.
Label says:
Single Cask
Serie Speciale
Petite Fine Champagne
(in French something about #319 of a limited series of 504 I think)
86 proof 750 ml
Jules Duret & C Jarnac - France
Specially Bottled for Marty's, Dallas, Texas
(Marty's was a wine bar and in the liquor business from 1943 to 1997)
Imported by American Wine and Importing Co.
The bottle has a heavy gold metal type seal with wire inside it and a small lead medallion holding the wire.
So it is at least 15 years old but I would guess much older as my father would have been 82 in '97 and I can't think of anyone who would give him cognac then but he was a bit of a high flyer in the 50's and 60's.
Anything you can tell me would be appreciated.

HI Constance!

The good news?  This is so high in alcohol that it doesn't change much at all with time in the bottle---it's as good today as it was the day it was bottled.  The bad news? It hasn't appreciated in value the way some fine wines do, for exactly the same reason.  It's worth about what a current bottling of Cognac is worth--maybe about $50 or so.  

Here's a bit more about the company as a whole: Gert v. Paczensky wrote about this cognac: "The brand Jules Duret was used for exports to the USA... it included top qualities: Grande Champagne Grande Champagne Lot024/98."

When in 1890 Theodore Duret merged his company, Jules Duret, with another prominent independent Cognac firm (Louis Royer), many casks and 'Dame Jeanne' from the substantial stock of mature 'Eau-de-Vie' were secreted away to a dark and hidden cellar near Jarnac known fondly and appropriately as the Paradis.

The name and reputation of Jules Duret is being received today with this superb Grande Champagne cognac - drawn almost exclusively from the Paradis cellar and blended with all the love and care for the fine tradition of the cognac Jules Duret of the 19th century.

Your bottle is a Petite Fine Champagne, not a Grand Champagne, so it is not the top of the line.  But it is still darn nice stuff!

hope that helps

Paul Wagner


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Paul Wagner


Wines of the world, wine a food matching, wine and food service questions. I currently teach Wine courses at Napa Valley College, am an international wine judge, written many articles for publication, and have been a guest speaker at way too many wine conferences to remember. 25 years in the business. With Liz Thach and Janeen Olsen, I authored the definitive book on wine marketing: Wine Marketing & Sales, Strategies for a Saturated Market by The Wine Appreciation Guild, which won the Gourmand International Award in 2008 for the best wine book for professionals! With Rick Kushman of Capital Public Radio, I host a radio show and podcast called Bottletalk at, where I answer questions about wine and food on the air.


30 years in the business.

Society of Wine Educators, Academy of Wine Communications, American Wine Society

Vineyard and Winery Management Magazine, Fine Wine Journal, les Amis du Vin Journal, Society of Wine Educators Journal, and more.

I have taught at Napa Valley College for the last twenty years.

Awards and Honors
Spanish National Wine Fair: A lifetime dedicated to wine award. Espaderino della Castelania di Soave in Italy.

Past/Present Clients
Wineries include Caymus, Wente, Parducci, Shannon Ridge, Paul Dolan Wines, Vigilance, and others. Wine regions include the Union des Grand Crus de Borcdeaux, Union des Grands Crus de St. Emilion, Consorzio di Chianti CLassico, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, Consorzio di Franciacorta, Rioja Alavesa, and others.

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