All About Cognac


What is Cognac – is it wine or is it distilled spirits? Well, actually, it is both. It is distilled wine, or brandy, and often called eau de vie. Beyond that, in order to be called Cognac it must be made according to strictly-defined regulations, and it must also come from the Cognac region in France. Located in the countryside surrounding the Charente River one hundred miles north of Bordeaux, this twenty-mile area is called the “golden circle” and encompasses Cognac and the second distilling town of Jarnac.

Because cognac is made with grapes, a Cognac cocktail goes more naturally with a lunch or dinner that also might include a glass of white or red wine. Join us today as we talk with Cyrille Gautier Auriol, Hennessy’s International Training & Promotion Manager, about the the history, the method of production, and the pleasure of tasting Cognac, and you’ll see how versatile this beverage really can be.

For More Info – Hennessy:


Click Below to Play the Show:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Show #172
(1:02:08 min 44 MB)





5 Responses to “All About Cognac”

  1. 1 Helen Palmer Oct 16th, 2007 at 1:40 am

    I have just found your wonderful website and have enjoyed surfing around listening to all the great information on wine you have here.

    I am very much looking forward to more information on South African wines. Did you know that they have quite a thriving cognac industry too?

    Congratulations on such an interesting and informative site!

    Helen Palmer

  2. 2 GrapeRadio Bunch Oct 24th, 2007 at 8:14 am

    Helen, thanks for the comments. Believe me, we really want to check out every corner of the globe for wine stories. Some day…some day.


  3. 3 Brian Slanovich Nov 8th, 2007 at 1:53 pm

    I am new to your podcast and am thrilled to have your shows available. It’s a great way to learn the answers to questions that you might be afraid to ask. Keep up the good work!
    On Cognac:
    I was surprised to learn that the major houses don’t have estate fruit or even, typically, a master distiller in house. Not taking away from the talent of the local growers/distillers, but one would think that the House would want more control. The concept actually took some of the allure away for me by likening the product to a blended scotch with better marketing.
    It has, however, piqued my interest in finding “estate”, single batch, vintage, or even single barrel cognac. The pleasure of single malt whisky is, for me, due largely to the variances and is all but lost when blended. The notion that one’s still, geographic location, weather and water source defines your product should be inherited in the region of Cognac. While I realize that I am insulting over 400 years of (French!) producers, it seems that someone in the region might be striving for a more unique product. The beverage market has shown, with the growth of single-barrel ____, small batch_______, artisinal______, vintage______, that the consumer appreciates a more unique and distinct spirit.

    That said, I may have misunderstood the discussion, or haven’t adapted my palette to appreciate more of the subtleties in cognac. Either way, I would enjoy some discourse on the topic,

  4. 4 Amanda Garnham Nov 18th, 2009 at 4:12 am

    Dear Brian
    I think that you need to discover Armagnac, where you will truly find what you are looking for.

  1. 1 GrapeRadio » Blog Archive » Cognac pingback on Aug 17th, 2009 at 7:16 am

Leave a Reply

Recent Posts

Monthly Archives



GrapeRadio is a wine talk show. Show topics cover issues such as the enjoyment of wine, wine news and industry trends - the hallmark of the show is interviews with world class guest (winemakers, vineyards owners, wine retail / wholesale leaders, restaurateurs and sommeliers). The scope of the show is international so expect to hear many guests from around the world.

GrapeRadio has received numerous awards and honors including the 2008 James Beard Award for excellence in Journalism.

GrapeRadio has been the subject of numerous news reports by: The New York Times, Business Week, CNN, The Financial Times of London, and Wired Magazine.