XO is intensely aromatic, showing the beautiful orange-blossom, anise, and tropical spice perfume of the California style, along with powerful concentrated aromas of rancio, orange zest, and sweet smoky vanilla reminiscent of the European style. Luscious flavors of dried tropical fruit, sweet caramel and toasted brown spice introduce the palate to the warming flavors of rich, mellow, oak. In the mouth, E&J XO exhibits great finesse, being soft and plush with a lingering expression of elegance in the finish.
Ultimate Beverage Challenge 90 points - Topaz/amber color. Displays moderately dry notes of old leather, raisins, figs, and toasted walnut in the bouquet. Taste profile highlights medium-sweet flavors of candy bar, oak resin, vanilla bean, and dark caramel. (Apr 2014)
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|Our founders, Ernest and Julio Gallo, sold their first brandy under the ”Cream of California” label in 1938, following in the footsteps of the Spanish missions who had made brandy in California as far back as the late 18th century.
After Prohibition, a number of California grape harvests were unduly large, prompting producers to distill almost half of their crop into brandy that could be stored in barrels for several years. Thus a prototypical California-style brandy was born, lighter in flavor and mouthfeel than its European counterparts and better for mixing into a range of cocktails.
Decades later, we still make our brandy in a style unique to California, with subtle, enticing flavors and a smooth mouthfeel.