Friday 1 May 2009
ARMAGNAC VS COGNAC - THE DEBATE CONTINUES
Why bother to paint a bottle?
Well, because it’s not just any old bottle, that’s why.
It’s an Armagnac bottle, and even the bottle is something special.
I have just been asked to do a watercolour of an Armagnac bottle by Becky, an American friend who has been to La Petite Galerie innumerable times, and we’ve spent many hours painting together.
It’s done and on it’s way to her via La Poste and the US Mail.
Anyway, while I was painting I was reminded about the ongoing and passionate debate between lovers of Cognac and those who prefer Armagnac.
In English we’d simply categorise them as brandies, but this nomenclature would horrify any French person.
Both are considered very special products in France, and they’ve both become imbued with almost mystical auras.
Having used the crude definition ‘brandy’ I’ve given the game away, so I won’t spend any time on the history, the grapes or the complicated processes involved in their production.
Suffice it to say the debate about the comparative qualities continues at a passionate level.
Now here’s the rub. Wait for it. Yes, Armagnac is by far the better digestif. No doubt about it.
Well that’s easy to answer. It’s because I come from Gascony (where Armagnac is made) and not Cognac (where Cognac is made). Therefore Armagnac must be better. And I can state this with confidence and impunity (I hope) because I live a long way from Cognac.
If you’d like more information about painting an Armagnac bottle with me – or, even better, tasting Armagnac in our area, please contact me at:
Posted by Ray Johnstone at 21:43