In 1715, Jean Martell, a young merchant originally from Jersey, created his own trading business at Gatebourse in Cognac,on the banks of the Charente, and thus founded one of the very first cognac houses. Martell used grapes from the vineyards in the Borderie subregion, and used Tronçais oak for its casks, this made a combination that resulted in an exceptionally smooth cognac.
After his death in 1753, his widow and then his two sons and grandson continued this tradition and developed the export business to make Martell the number one in England in 1814.
In 1831, Martell created his first “VSOP” (Very Superior Old Pale) cognac and continued its international expansion. Its fame spread throughout the world, with the first exports to Japan and other Asian markets, such as Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia and Korea.