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Armagnac

Armagnac is often referred to as the oldest and youngest brandy in France.  The oldest because it was first distilled in the middle of the 15th century in adapted perfume stills, probably brought over by the Moors. It is regarded as the youngest because the Armagnaçais are still arguing over how to distil it. The Armagnac region has always been a very special example of that exclusive concept, la France profonde.  It is located well away from the madding crowds, motorways and the industrial eyesores of modern France, about a hundred miles south of Bordeaux.  The gentle, fair and fertile countryside is a land of near perfect rural paradise and home to rich food such as foie gras and truffles. Countless small firms distil their wine here by using a single or continuous distillation method. The distillation range is between 52 – 72 % abv which allows a greater fruitiness in the spirit, although usually at the expense of smoothness and refinement of the brandy. The grapes used are similar to those grown for making cognac.  Armagnac is also aged in oak barrels for many years, until perfected, and then removed from the wood and kept in glass bonbonnes. Some very rare, old armagnacs may date from the 19th century.  Others still share the exclusivity with the fruitiness and rich, pruney flavours created in this land of rural bliss, known today as Gascony.

The armagnac vineyard area (around twelve thousand hectares) is only about a fifth of the size of its big brother cognac, to the north.  However, the individual skills of the many small producers have created a wealth of individual, aged armagnacs.   The range of vintages available from the twentieth and twenty first centuries is immense but the stock of each is rapidly dwindling as demand outstrips supply.  Here at Brandyclassics we stock a range beyond the reach of many collectors and connoisseurs and we specialise in those from the top cru, Bas Armagnac.

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  1. Chateau de Charue Vintage 1980

    A rich taste of dried orange and kumquats with maron de glace and almonds on the nose.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: A nice nose full of freshness, with aromas of dried fruits and candied orange.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Very fine and round in the mouth. Lots of softness, with a superb finish of candied fruit and light wood.
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    Excl. VAT: £104.93 Incl. VAT: £125.92

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    A rich taste of dried orange and kumquats with maron de glace and almonds on the nose.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: A nice nose full of freshness, with aromas of dried fruits and candied orange.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Very fine and round in the mouth. Lots of softness, with a superb finish of candied fruit and light wood.
    Learn More
  2. Domaine de Gachot 1980
    A younger version of the 1960. Wonderful amber colour.
    Aroma:
    Aroma: Lovely fresh nose, with aromas of dried fruit, candied oranges and rancio
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Very fine and round in the mouth, with flavours of currants and cinnamon. Extremely soft but slightly wooded superb finish of candied fruits.
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    Excl. VAT: £106.36 Incl. VAT: £127.63

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    A younger version of the 1960. Wonderful amber colour.
    Aroma:
    Aroma: Lovely fresh nose, with aromas of dried fruit, candied oranges and rancio
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Very fine and round in the mouth, with flavours of currants and cinnamon. Extremely soft but slightly wooded superb finish of candied fruits.
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  3. Domaine du Cardinat 1973 Bas Armagnac

    Presented in the traditional basquaise bottle, there is little doubt that these armagnacs are superbly made with many great qualities. This very limited vintage is rich and well balanced with sultana and prune flavours combined with some hints of pineapple and spice.

    Flavour:
    Flavour: Rich and well balanced with sultana and prune flavours combined with some hints of pineapple and spice.
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    Excl. VAT: £108.86 Incl. VAT: £130.63

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    Presented in the traditional basquaise bottle, there is little doubt that these armagnacs are superbly made with many great qualities. This very limited vintage is rich and well balanced with sultana and prune flavours combined with some hints of pineapple and spice.

    Flavour:
    Flavour: Rich and well balanced with sultana and prune flavours combined with some hints of pineapple and spice.
    Learn More
  4. Castarède Vintage 1977 Bas Armagnac

    Mellow and well developed with dried plum and crystallised fruit flavours and a relatively long, sweet finish. This vintage is another great from Castarède.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Crystallised fruit and plum
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Mellow and well developed with dried plum and crystallised fruit flavours and a relatively long, sweet finish
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    Excl. VAT: £111.35 Incl. VAT: £133.62

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    Mellow and well developed with dried plum and crystallised fruit flavours and a relatively long, sweet finish. This vintage is another great from Castarède.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Crystallised fruit and plum
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Mellow and well developed with dried plum and crystallised fruit flavours and a relatively long, sweet finish
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  5. Delord Vintage Bas Armagnac 1972

    Good round prune flavours with depth and balance. Many of the younger armagnacs from this fine producer are hugely underrated.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Deep prune and walnut complexity with some oak and nutty aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Plums and prunes with some delicious almond nutty tones. A deep richness which is highly regarded by connoisseurs.
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    Excl. VAT: £113.45 Incl. VAT: £136.14

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    Good round prune flavours with depth and balance. Many of the younger armagnacs from this fine producer are hugely underrated.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Deep prune and walnut complexity with some oak and nutty aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Plums and prunes with some delicious almond nutty tones. A deep richness which is highly regarded by connoisseurs.
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  6. Clos des Saveurs 1971 Bas Armagnac
    Only one bottle remaining

    This is one of the great armagnacs from this esteemed house providing delightful fruity flavours with liquorice and Muscat grape.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: A predominance of liquorice on the nose but one can also detect Muscat and sandalwood aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: The liquorice comes out in the flavour as well as the Muscat grape. There is a noticeable flavour of crystallised fruits.
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    Excl. VAT: £113.60 Incl. VAT: £136.32

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    This is one of the great armagnacs from this esteemed house providing delightful fruity flavours with liquorice and Muscat grape.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: A predominance of liquorice on the nose but one can also detect Muscat and sandalwood aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: The liquorice comes out in the flavour as well as the Muscat grape. There is a noticeable flavour of crystallised fruits.
    Learn More
  7. Domaine de Larriou (Dando) 1980 Bas Armagnac

    These armagnacs are distilled at a slightly higher range which tends to provide more dried fruit flavours whilst still maintaining the plummy flavours of Bas armagnacs.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Some wonderful complex sweet spices, roasted hazelnut and coffee aromas consistent with all their armagnacs.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: A wonderful armagnac house whose style is consistent across their small range of vintages. Flavours of cocoa, burnt coffee and spice with a long finish. Their balance is very good with extra strength complementing the taste.
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    Excl. VAT: £113.80 Incl. VAT: £136.56

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    These armagnacs are distilled at a slightly higher range which tends to provide more dried fruit flavours whilst still maintaining the plummy flavours of Bas armagnacs.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Some wonderful complex sweet spices, roasted hazelnut and coffee aromas consistent with all their armagnacs.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: A wonderful armagnac house whose style is consistent across their small range of vintages. Flavours of cocoa, burnt coffee and spice with a long finish. Their balance is very good with extra strength complementing the taste.
    Learn More
  8. Castarède Vintage 1975 Bas Armagnac

    International Wine & Spirit Competition 2015 - Gold Medal (Outstanding)

    As with cognac, 1975 was a big year and many fine brandies were made. This medal-winning beauty is no exception.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Very well balanced nose, very smooth and tender a marraige of molasses, dry banana, rice powder, white chocolate, nettle flower and Petunias
    Flavour:
    Flavour: It offers leather flavours, dry wood, white truffle and quinine bark tints. The mouth is smooth, woody, with chocolate truffle flavours, vanilla, cinnamon, brioche-like flavours. Finishing with a reminder of liquorice.
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    Excl. VAT: £116.38 Incl. VAT: £139.66

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    International Wine & Spirit Competition 2015 - Gold Medal (Outstanding)

    As with cognac, 1975 was a big year and many fine brandies were made. This medal-winning beauty is no exception.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Very well balanced nose, very smooth and tender a marraige of molasses, dry banana, rice powder, white chocolate, nettle flower and Petunias
    Flavour:
    Flavour: It offers leather flavours, dry wood, white truffle and quinine bark tints. The mouth is smooth, woody, with chocolate truffle flavours, vanilla, cinnamon, brioche-like flavours. Finishing with a reminder of liquorice.
    Learn More
  9. Delord Vintage 1971 Bas Armagnac

    These armagnacs are still developing and show many fine qualities. The 1971 has benefitted from long barrel ageing and has many of the qualities of some that are older.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Some oak and nutty aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Deep prune and walnut complexity.
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    Excl. VAT: £119.93 Incl. VAT: £143.92

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    These armagnacs are still developing and show many fine qualities. The 1971 has benefitted from long barrel ageing and has many of the qualities of some that are older.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Some oak and nutty aromas.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Deep prune and walnut complexity.
    Learn More
  10. Castarède Vintage 1974 Bas Armagnac

    Castarède was recently awarded the title 'Living Heritage Company', a testament to the quality of their product and French 'savoir-faire'. Their Armagnacs are wonderful at any time of the day but the 1974 makes a particularly fine 'digestif'.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Very fruity bouquet with lively orange aromas and touches of perfume.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Light, elegant, refreshing fruity flavours with an interesting, long spicy finish
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    Excl. VAT: £120.76 Incl. VAT: £144.91

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    Castarède was recently awarded the title 'Living Heritage Company', a testament to the quality of their product and French 'savoir-faire'. Their Armagnacs are wonderful at any time of the day but the 1974 makes a particularly fine 'digestif'.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Very fruity bouquet with lively orange aromas and touches of perfume.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Light, elegant, refreshing fruity flavours with an interesting, long spicy finish
    Learn More
  11. Domaine de Larriou (Dando) 1973 Bas Armagnac
    One of the older armagnacs from this fine cellar and glorious flavours of almonds, prune and dried fruits. Sadly they stopped making armagnacs but still have quite large stocks.
    Aroma:
    Aroma: Some wonderful complex sweet spices, roasted hazelnut and coffee aromas consistent with all their armagnacs.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: A wonderful armagnac house whose style is consistent across their small range of vintages. Flavours of cocoa, burnt coffee and spice with a long finish. Their balance is very good with extra strength complementing the taste.
    Learn More
    Excl. VAT: £135.38 Incl. VAT: £162.46

    Out of stock

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    One of the older armagnacs from this fine cellar and glorious flavours of almonds, prune and dried fruits. Sadly they stopped making armagnacs but still have quite large stocks.
    Aroma:
    Aroma: Some wonderful complex sweet spices, roasted hazelnut and coffee aromas consistent with all their armagnacs.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: A wonderful armagnac house whose style is consistent across their small range of vintages. Flavours of cocoa, burnt coffee and spice with a long finish. Their balance is very good with extra strength complementing the taste.
    Learn More
  12. Domaine de Lagardenne 1973 Larée Bas Armagnac

    Amber in colour with wood, orange and crystalised fruit on the nose. Sweet apple flavour followed by burnt walnut and limes.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Nose with notes of wood, candied orange and candied fruits.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Very smooth and full in the mouth with lots of presence and finesse giving a long suave finish.
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    Excl. VAT: £140.99 Incl. VAT: £169.19

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    Amber in colour with wood, orange and crystalised fruit on the nose. Sweet apple flavour followed by burnt walnut and limes.

    Aroma:
    Aroma: Nose with notes of wood, candied orange and candied fruits.
    Flavour:
    Flavour: Very smooth and full in the mouth with lots of presence and finesse giving a long suave finish.
    Learn More

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