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Cognac

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Cognac is a type of brandy produced in a small area of France around Cognac which includes the regions Charente-Maritime, Charente, Deux-Sévres, and Dordogne. These are further divided into six zones: Grande Champagne, Petite Champagne, Borderies, Fins Bois, Bon Bois, and Bois Ordinaire.

Cognac differentiates itself from brandy due to its double distillation in a traditionally shaped Alembic Charentais copper still. Cognac can only be made with a limited number of grape varieties. These include ugni blanc, colombard, and folle blanche.

Cognac has a number of classifications including:
VS (Very Special): these include all the cognacs that have rested in oak barrels for at least two years.
VSOP (Very Special Old Pale): four years of ageing, minimum. Many people also know the VSOP as "Réserve" which is the French name.
And finally, the most exclusive, the* XO* (Extra Old), which ages in oak barrels for at least six years, and which connoisseurs also call Napoleon or Hors d'âge.

Cognac can be enjoyed neat, with a drop of water or mixed in long drinks and cocktails. Cognac pairs wonderfully with chocolate.

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