Brandy is produced all over the world, but only those made in Cognac region of France can be called as “Cognac”
There’s around 5,000 winegrowers work the 75,000 hectares of vineyards in Cognac. 95% of vineyard in Cognac consist of Ugni Blanc grapes, which is ideal for producing wine that is later distilled into Cognac.
In French, “Eaux” means water and ”Vie” means life .
Eaux-De-Vie is distilled white wine aged in French oak barrels and time would transform the robust Eaux-De-Vie into the nuanced spirits which are blended into Hennessy cognac.
It is normally believed that wines get better with age. Somehow, people make a similar assumption about cognacs. However, ageing doesn’t happen in the bottle.
In fact, for cognac, ageing (also known as maturation) is a process where Eaux-De-Vie (distilled white wine) are aged in oak barrels.
There's a myth that tears in a glass of cognac – more commonly known in Chinese as “legs” – indicates quality. The idea most likely stems from a similar belief about tears in a glass of wine.
So what does a crying cognac mean? The viscosity of a cognac continues to increase the longer it is aged in the barrel, which is why more mature cognacs tend to have thicker, slower-moving tears due to a higher alcohol content.
While observing these droplets are a crucial part of sampling, the colour, palate and aroma are better indicators of quality.