In a world of constant upheaval, cognac makers have always taken pride in how their centuries-old techniques never change. So it’s big news that these days the brandy – which originates in the Cognac region of France – is enjoying quite the renaissance among bar and restaurant patrons of all age groups, cultures and regions.
“Cognac is really gaining ground with the recent cocktail renaissance hitting bars across the country,” says Todd Appel, a master barman in Chicago, Ill. “It is such a timeless and elegant spirit – not to mention, it appeals to such a wide range of tastes, such as bourbon and scotch drinkers, whether ordered neat, on the rocks or in cocktails – that bartenders are turning to it more and more often.”
Here are a few things to keep in mind when ordering cognac:
• There are three grades of cognac: Very Special (V.S.), which is aged two years; Very Superior Old Pale (V.S.O.P.), which is aged four years; and Extra Old (X.O.), which is aged six years.
• The younger varieties (V.S. & V.S.O.P.) work better in cocktails. Older, more mature cognacs are better consumed neat.
Why the resurgence in this beverage’s appeal? Well, according to spirit aficionados and experts, it’s in large part thanks to the emergence of new ranges of the amber liquid that defy the drink’s image as a spirit best enjoyed in the winter months. In fact, not only are two of the latest stand-outs – the aromatic CAMUS Elegance V.S. and V.S.O.P. – perfect year-round given their distinctive smoothness, aroma and overall elegance, but they’re ideal for making cocktails taste like nothing you’ve ever experienced before.
If you’re really looking for a treat, try the CAMUS Pink Love cocktail below, which Appel says is perfect before, during or after dinner.
CAMUS Pink Love
-1 ounce CAMUS V.S. Elegance
-0.25 ounce Raspberry Liqueur
Combine CAMUS and raspberry liqueur in a champagne flute. Top with champagne, and garnish with a raspberry.
For more information about the fifth-generation, family-owned CAMUS cognac brand, visit www.camus.fr.