Poitou-Charentes is the place to be if you love liqueurs and traditional products. The outstanding Cognac, Pineau and many liqueurs will make you appreciate even more this tranquil place under the sun, as it is often referred to.
Cognac is the traditional Poitou-Charentes wine. It is the produce of a double distillation. Issued from the wine and the grapes from the local vineyards, this wine is distilled a first time to obtain a “brouillis”. The substance is then distilled a second time in order to become a pure eau de vie.
Afterwards the wine maker will melt these elements according to his own recipe. Different eaux de vie produced following the same process are mixed together. Then the wine grower will blend eau de vie originating from different vintages. In the end it provides the French Cognac, which is 72 % proof.
Top Tip! This liqueur has to be savoured as aperitif. Its finesse and bouquet will be a pleasure for each of your guests.
Another Poitou-Charentes very traditional and local product is the Angelica liqueur. It can be drunk as a digestive or be used for cocktails, sorbets and desserts. It is foremost originating from Deux-Sèvres and is little-known even in this French department. The plant itself is grown in the Marais Poitevin, next to Niort. It can also be used in cakes recipes, you must taste this during your stay in France or while considering buying a house in Poitou-Charentes.
Pineau des Charentes
The Pineau des Charentes is a mysterious wine originating from the blend of grape juice and from the famous Cognac. This recipe was born of a mistake done by a wine maker during the XVIth century who accidentally added grape juice to eau de vie. He decided to keep the barrel and discovered few years later what prestigious French it turned into.
There are 3 types of Pineau wine which are Pineau white, rosé and red wines. However the white Pineau remains the most common wine.
- White Pineau is done with Colombard / Ugni Blanc and Cognac. This liqueur wine has to stay at least 5 years in the barrel.
Top Tip! To consume your Pineau des Charentes, the white Pineau des Charentes will be preferably sipped as aperitif. It will be in perfect harmony with the sampling of Foie Gras as well. As a liqueur it will be appreciated as digestive during the dessert.
- The young Pineau wines can be savoured with white meats, Foie Gras as well as fishes during the meal.
- The Rosé and red Pineau wines are produced with Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon but above all of Merlot blended to the tasty Cognac. These liqueur wines are generally kept at least one year in the barrel. This fine French wine is fruitier than the white Pineau.
Top Tip! Appreciated as an aperitif, it will be the magical ingredient in a few French traditional recipes involving chocolate, snails or typical fruits salads.