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National Cognac Day Sunday 4th June 2023

National Cognac DayWe love to celebrate National Cognac Day!  This year it’s on Sunday 4th June so if you have a bottle you keep for special occasions or fancy trying something new for the first time, this is time to do it!

Cognac, which originates from a town of the same name in France, is a type of brandy, the generic name for spirits that have been made from fruit.  It begins life as a white wine, that has been produced in one of six designated growing regions, and is then distilled in an alembic still and aged in oak casks for years.

Cognac’s production is a science and indeed an art.  If the drink is new to you, here are some handy links to find out more about it:

The other very important factor you need to know is that most cognacs are blended.  This is essential to produce large quantities of a product, that always tastes the same.

But, here at Hermitage we do it differently.  Our cognacs are not blended, they come from Single Estates and each one has unique and identifiable flavours.  So, if you really want to try something new, Hermitage is the place to go.  Each bottle will tell you how many years the cognac has been in the barrel and if it’s a vintage, the year the grapes were harvested.  Enjoy!!

Nineteenth Century Cognacs Join the Hermitage Range

Nineteenth century cognacsWe have had an exciting week adding new products to our shelves all of which are nineteenth century cognacs.  One is in fact a pre-phylloxera cognac and the others were produced at the time when the louse outbreak was sweeping through France.  Two of the cognacs are additions to our Paradis range, and therefore are in extremely limited supply, and the other is a particularly rare bottling from Roullet & Delamain.  Enjoy exploring them:

Hermitage Paradis 1887 Grande Champagne Cognac

Produced by the House of Guiziet, situated just outside Segonzac, on the road to Barbezieux, it stands on the Cognacian chalk slopes where the vines can penetrate up to thirty metres. At the time, the estate was about 7 hectares in size but only produced about 3000 litres of wine from its Folle Blanche grapes.  Once distilled, the ensuing spirit was kept in oak casks for about 75 years before being placed into bonbonnes.  Very long barrel ageing has created a beautifully balanced cognac, together with an intense chocolate brown / deep scarlet colour and depth of flavours.  Did you know?  In 1887, the United Kingdom celebrated the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria.

Hermitage Paradis 1883 Grande Champagne Cognac

Originates from a tiny village called Corcheville, near Eraville, on the east side of Grande Champagne. The tiny, 3 hectare estate grew a mixture of Folle Blanche and Colombard grapes and the cognac was aged in Limousin casks which were almost certainly stored in an old barn.   Having aged for a staggering 90 – 100 years, this cognac was removed from the wood and placed into glass bonbonnes.  It is superbly balanced, with an intense dark tan / deep scarlet colour and depth of flavours, and is presented at its cask strength of 41.4% abv.  Did you know?  In 1883, the English cricket team, on a tour of Australia, were first presented with the ashes of a bail.

Roullet & Delamain 1858 Grande Fine Champagne Cognac

The history of the Roullet Сognac House dates back to the eighteenth century when Paul Frédéric Roullet founded the Cognac House in 1772. He managed to enter into a close relationship with the Royal Court and Napoleon Bonaparte was known to become one of the first connoisseurs of the Roullet Cognac House.  At the beginning of the nineteenth century Paul Roullet married the daughter of the Delamain Cognac House founder, the oldest cognac producing family still famous for its drinks’ production. This marriage resulted in the consolidation of the two houses and the company was called Roullet & Delamain for sometime.  Did you know?  In 1858, the Lourdes Apparitions were first reported by Bernadette Soubirous, a 14-year-old miller’s daughter.


National Cognac Day – Saturday 4th June 2022

National Cognac Day 2022National Cognac Day on June 4th invites you to enjoy one of the finest alcoholic drinks available. Cognac, which originates from a town of the same name in France, is a type of brandy enjoyed because of its distilled and fine taste.  Cognac begins as a white wine that has been produced in one of six designated growing regions.  This definition explains the axiom ‘ all cognac is brandy but not all brandy is cognac’.  Ironically, the white wine from which cognac starts, is considered by most wine connoisseurs to be entirely undrinkable.  But once it has been distilled in an alembic still and aged in oak casks for years, it is absolutely delicious.

Cognac comes in multiple grades and exploring them can be a great way to spend National Cognac Day.   At the entry level cognac is great for making cocktails such as the Sidecar or French Connection.  At the  other end of the spectrum, single estate, unblended, vintage cognacs should be savoured, every sip enjoyed for its individuality and complex flavours.  Hermitage specialise in producing cognacs with numbers on the bottles so you know exactly what you’re buying and each one is unique.  National Cognac Day is the perfect opportunity to get to know one of the world’s most premium drinks.

Hermitage Tasting on Radio Wiltshire

Radio WiltshireWe are delighted to report that we had even more coverage on Radio Wiltshire last month, featuring on the Christmas Eve Breakfast Show.

Following an interview with our very own David Baker, some tasting of our Hermitage 50 Year old Grande Champagne Cognac took place live on air.

This particular cognac has been a roaring success over the past year as it won The International Wine & Spirits Competition’s Gold Outstanding Award and The Cognac Trophy 2021.

David had previously been heard on BBC Radio Wiltshire giving a more in depth interview.  The whole programme can be heard here, although you need to go to 2 hours and 42 minutes to hear the interview.  Credit the Ben Prater Show BBC Radio Wiltshire 05 November 2021.