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Drink Dictionary Word
Armagnac
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Category: Brandy & Cognac
Alc/vol: 40% to 53%

Is a famous brandy produced in the region of Armagnac, France. Grapes from this region are picked then pressed to extract the juice. The juice is fermented to make wine that is weak in alcohol (6% to 8% alc/vol) and very acidic. The wine is then distilled in one continuous operation to become Armagnac. Armagnac is always aged in oak casks, for a period of time, before being bottled and sold. The following indications on the label tell you how it has been aged. The longer the aging the better the armagnac.

3 Stars, 3 Crowns ......... Minimum 2 years
VO, VSOP, Reserve .............. Minimum 5 years
Napoleon, Extra, XO........ Minimum 6 years
Hors d'Age..........Minimum 10 years

A brandy's quality is judged by its nose. The aromas can vary from fruity to floral to woody (a burnt copper smell is not a desired quality) depending on its age. Armagnac's color is light to medium amber. However, color is not an indication of quality since caramel maybe added to modify the color for commercial purposes. Best enjoyed straight up in a cognac snifter.


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