Turn­ing Grapes into Co­gnac

Upscale Living Magazine - - Spirits -

To be sold to the pub­lic, a Co­gnac must have been aged in oak cask for at least two years count­ing from the end of the dis­til­la­tion pe­riod, April 1 of the year fol­low­ing the har­vest. Once bot­tled, a Co­gnac, un­like wine, doesn’t evolve any­more. There­fore it re­tains the same age in­def­i­nitely.

Co­gnac is a blend of the dis­tilled bev­er­ages (known as eaux-de-vie) from dif­fer­ent ages (for larger op­er­a­tions it in­cludes dif­fer­ent dis­til­leries and vine­yards). This blend­ing of dif­fer­ent eaux-de-vie is im­por­tant to ob­tain a com­plex­ity of fla­vors ab­sent from an eau-de-vie from a sin­gle year, dis­tillery or vine­yard. The Bureau Na­tional In­ter­pro­fes­sion­nel du Co­gnac (BINC) is in charge of con­trol­ling the stocks and the age of ma­tur­ing Co­gnac. It cod­i­fied the use of the des­ig­na­tions based on the length of age­ing of the youngest Co­gnac in the blend.

The most widely used des­ig­na­tions are as fol­lows:

V.S. (Very Spe­cial) or *** (3 stars): Co­gnacs whose youngest eaude-vie is at least two years old.

V.S.O.P. (Very Su­pe­rior Old Pale), Re­serve: Co­gnacs whose youngest eau-de-vie is at least four years old.

Napoléon, X.O (Ex­tra Old), Hors d’âge: Co­gnacs whose youngest eau-de-vie is at least six years old.

Gen­er­ally speak­ing, Co­gnac mas­ter blenders use eaux-de-vie that are much older than the min­i­mum re­quire­ment for their blends, ac­cord­ing to BINC. In fact, the most pres­ti­gious des­ig­na­tions may have aged for dozens of years in oak casks be­fore be­ing pre­sented to the pub­lic.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.