Found this little gem in the display case at the store recently. Normally I don't make product recommendations, but seeing that $1200 price tag (after a whopping 31% discount) made me want to say something about conspicuous comsumption.
There are some things that are just plain better than others. It's true no matter where you look. Some wines, cars, or clothing is so far ahead of its competition that people will pay a hefty premium to have it. The liquor in this bottle is not only rare and highly prized, it is made by a very well respected distiller. Yes, this liquor is well aged, remarkably smooth, and very French. It is not just ANY brandy - this is a genuine cognac. This particular spirit is some of the very best in the world.
That distinction means a lot. Most of us live in tough times and need to make the very most of the money we spend. Certainly it is ok to have luxuries when you can afford them, but the dedicated shopper knows that luxuries are not created equal. Here's one that I found a few years ago.
This is a brandy from California. It is well aged, remarkably smooth, and is really, really good. It's also a thousand dollars a bottle cheaper than it's snooty French cousin. Robb Report magazine says that it is just as good as, if not better than, its French cousin. They are absolutely right!
Because of the way that Oklahoma liquor laws are written, it is nearly impossible to find beer, wine or spirits from small producers. If your state isn't so prudish as mine, then I would invite you to save up $100 or so and find a 750ml bottle of Germain-Robin Select Barrel XO. It is really good and makes a wonderful Christmas gift.