More than half of the Cognac market continues to be controlled by Hennessy, Martell and Remy Martin. The availability of artisan products has been overshadowed by the promotional power of the 'big three'. However, that's now changing. Family grower-producers are expanding their distribution, offering all-natural expressions that distinguish them from the pack. Small batch, cask strength and single cask Cognacs are also giving consumers the chance to experience this classic brandy in its more elemental forms. Aside from Grande Champagne, Nicks Wine Merchants endeavour to range a cross section of styles including Cognacs from lesser known appellations like Fins Bois, Ils de Re and Borderies. Learn more about Cognac by clicking here.
Cognac returns as the King of Spirits.
Cognac is a huge earner for France, with exports frequently representing over 90% of total production. At the same time, Cognac has seen a significant transformation in its consumer base, from a predominantly older, affluent white demographic to a younger, urban, and significantly African-American and Asian crowd. The spirit has become ingrained in hip-hop culture, even celebrated in songs by rap artists, which also spawned its nickname 'Yak' (or 'Yack'). Today, there's much more substance and diversity to this 'King of Spirits' than big brand names and marketing hype might suggest, with some of the most exciting discoveries to be found among the smallest artisan grower producers.
The Cognac grape varieties.
As in Armagnac, the main variety planted is Ugni Blanc which accounts for about 98% of Cognac plantings. Folle Blanche along with Colombard are still authorised along with strictly limited amounts of other minor varietals. Growers are looking to pick grapes when they're barely ripe, aiming for acidity rather than alcohol. The leading houses (Courvoisier, Hennessy, Martell, and Rémy Martin) do very little distilling themselves. Rather, the 5,000 independent farmers in the region create the majority of Cognac in their own pot stills. The large houses then focus on managing the complex processes of storing, maturation and blending. Cognac must spend at least two years in barrel to be classified as such, however virtually all Cognacs end up as blends of various ages and appellations, a difficult task as one must imagine how blended eau-de-vies will mature over time, sometimes after decades in casks.
Buy Cognac online and have it shipped to most of Australia.
We taste and rate many of the Cognacs before you do, meaning we help take the guesswork out of your online purchase. Call us today on 1800 069 295 should you have any questions about our collection or click here
to learn more about Cognac.