Monday 21 October 2013

Ideal Wine Company Gives You an Education on Cognac

At the Ideal Wine Company we bring you a whole host of exclusive, vintage wines for your collection, however wine isn’t the only type of alcohol we have to offer you. We specialise in luxury drinks; in providing you with vintage bottles of wine, whiskey, brandy and other spirits, which are hard to find on the market and really add some value to your collection. One of these is Cognac, one of the most famous luxury brandies in existence. A favourite with collectors and drinkers alike, Cognac has built up a reputation over the years for its rich taste and decadent image.

A variety of brandy, the drink is actually named after the French town of Cognac; the drink is produced in the wine growing region around the town in the French Departments of Charente and Charente-Maritime. Like many drinks that originate in the French nation and have grown to have a lasting reputation, the history of Cognac is a long one, over four centuries long in fact. Wine producing in the region goes all the way back to the Roman era and even before the ‘invention’ of Cognac, the region was known for the quality of the drink it produced.

The invention of the drink came in the 17th Century, when Dutch traders realised that if they first distilled the wine they exported from the region, and stored it on oak caskets, it took up less space, allowing them to export more, and improve with age. They called this product ‘burnt’ wine or ‘brandewijn’ which is where the name brandy originates. From here producers in the area saw the value of the drink and developed the double distillation technique that wold prove critical to the modern brandy making process.

In time this technique, as well as the oak preservation technique made the drink unique to the town, which is how Cognac as we know it gradually came into being, however it wasn’t until 1909 that this would be enshrined in official decree; Cognac became an exclusive brand, unique to the town. The process was completed in 1936, when it was awarded its own Appellation d’origine contrôlée or AOC, which legally denotes an area in which a particular product can be made. 

The Appellation d’origine controlee protects the name Cognac, imposing certain rules and restrictions about which drink can bear the iconic name; it’s similar to the way the name ‘Champagne’ is protected. Cognac has grown to be a drink of elegance and class, and we have several delicious Cognac’s for you. We have the Remy Martin XO Champagne Cognac, priced from £110.40, we have the Delamain Pale and Dry XO Grande Champagne Cognac, priced from £110.40 and we have Claude Thorin VR Cognac, priced from £76.80.