FrontRunners: Prodigious Pour
This year marks the 250th anniversary of the House of Hine (www.hinecognac.com), which dates to 1763 and achieved fame throughout Europe under the guidance of Thomas Hine, an Englishman who emigrated from his native country to Cognac. In 1991, to celebrate the bicentenary of Hine’s arrival in France, his direct descendants, Bernard and Jacques Hine, produced a limited-edition offering made from the finest Grande Champagne eaux-de-vie in their cellars—including some from the pre-phylloxera vintages of the 19th century. Because producing the Cognac and the decanter and case that house it involved the talents of multiple artisans, the house decided to call this exquisite presentation Talent de Thomas Hine Hors d’Age Cognac ($12,000; for availability, e-mail email@example.com). Today, this historic blend is still offered on a limited basis. The individually numbered Baccarat decanter is topped with a silver band, and the handcrafted case doubles as a humidor.