The king of brandies


Cognac is a French brandy named after the region of France where it was first conceived and where it is still distilled. It is the premium world brandy and its production process follows strict guidelines. The brandy must consist of nine-tenths juice from the grape cultivars Ugni Blanc, Folle Blanche and Colombard, with greater leniency being afforded the final ten percent of the volume.

After an initial brewing phase, the mixture undergoes a two part distillation in a highly regulated process in which the distillation equipment itself must meet stringent measurements. The resulting clear liquid is then aged in limousine oak casks. The minimum period for this is two years, though it is often much longer. During this time, the cognac becomes coloured and flavoured by the oak in which it is contained. Through evaporation it looses both water and alchohol, though the latter more swiftly than the former. The barrels stop contributing flavour to the cognac after about fifty years of brewing. The majority of Cognac is produced by four major market players: Courvoisier, Hennessy, Martell and Remy Martin. Some of the grades of cognac are described below:

V.S. (Very Special): Cognac that has been stored for at least two years in the cask.

V.S.O.P. (Very Superior Old Pale): Cognac in which the youngest brandy component of the drink is four years old, but the majority is much older.

X.O. (Extra Old): The majority of the brandy is over twenty years old, and the youngest component is no less than six years old.

Napoleon: An aged cognac in between VSOP and XO.

Hors d’age: This highest quality brandy is usually aged for at least fifty years, if not more. It is one of the world’s most expensive drinks.

You can buy cognac on bidorbuy.