Purple Palate Blog

Armagnac

http://www.armagnac-janneau.com/en/gallery/armagnac-region.html

Armagnac

History.

Armagnac historically was thought to be better Brandy producer (than Cognac), but due to distance from coast there was less demand .

 

Region

There are 3 main Crus for Armagnac. Tenereze, Haut Armagnac and Bas Armagnac.

 

Raw material

May be produced by 10 varietals, the main ones being:

Ugni Blanc, Folle Blanche, Colombard, and Baco

Ugni Blanc is most coveted by only has 55% plantings, next is Baco at 32% plantings, with Folle Blanche and Colombard generally making most of the rest.

This range gives more diversity of styles and flavours.

No Must enrichment of SO2 maybe used in production.

 

Process

Armagnac is grapes varietals are fermented separately, so blenders have the widest range of materials to use.

With base wines at 8-10% generally.

 

Distillation

Armagnac is distilled to ABV between 52 and 72.4%, generally is about 60%

This means far more flavours abound in the spirit.

The Still types used maybe Charantais (double pot still) still or “alembic Armagnacais”, which is a unique single column still comprising of burner, column, wine heater and condenser, with up to 17 rectifier plates.

This still runs continuously and the spirit produced from single varietal does not need to be stopped when changing varietal.

 

Post production

With exception of Blanche Armagnac (unaged), Armagnac is aged in oak barrels, generally for a short time in new barrels then transferred into old barrels. European oak is generally preferred local Black oak, or French Limousine or Troncais.

Glass Demijohn for very old spirit.

Caramlisation is allowed for colour adjustment.

Once blended, the blend is rested in Oak Vats before bottling.

Alcohol is reduced by Petites Eaux blend of water and Armagnac.

 

 

 

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