What is Armagnac?

We get many people asking "What is Armagnac?" and thought it was high time we explained - seeing that we sell so many bottles of Vintage Armagnac every month.

What Armagnac is
Armagnac is a type of grape spirit (or brandy) distilled in the Armagnac region of Gascony, Southwest France. Armagnac is granted AOC status (or Appellation d'origine contrôlée which translates as ‘controlled designation of origin’) - applied to a range of food and drink products, which must be produced to a rigorous set of standards, in a traditional method and within strict geographical boundaries. In return they are allowed to bear the AOC seal, which is seen as an indicator of both consistency and quality.

Oldest Brandy
Armagnac is the oldest Brandy distilled in France, but has a much lower profile than its neighbour Cognac.  Armagnac is produced and sold on a much smaller scale than the much more industrialised Cognac and arguably offers a much more individual quality than any other spirit in France.

Bottle Of Armagnac Brandy

Armagnac is distilled from a range of AOC approved grapes (including Folle Blache, Colombard and Ugni Blanc) using traditional pot stills, but the initial spirit is raw and maturation in wooden barrels is the next essential step in production, with the spirit usually being left to mature in Oak casks until being bottled.

The colour of Armagnac can range from pale straw to rich amber and the oak and brandy react together throughout the ageing process developing the complex flavours and aromas of the finished product.

Vintage Armagnac
Part of the alcohol evaporates naturally during the long years in cask, and the French refer to this, charmingly, "la part des anges"(the angel's share).

Vintage Armagnac is available from most individual vintages over the last 100 years and as the vintage is inscribed on the label it makes a fantastic gift for a special birthday, anniversary or to mark a special date, such as a retirement.

I hope this explains fully what Armagnac is, and feel free to check out Our Selection of Vintage Armagnac in our shop

What is Armagnac - Vintage Armagnac Packaged Safely

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