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Pineau des Charentes, Château d'Orignac

Brandy from France - SW France (excl. Bordeaux)
A delicious digestif. If you find full-strength brandy a little strong, this is a great alternative. Made from Cognac, but sweetened with red grape juice just after harvest, this is a rich nutty, figgy delight.
Price: £17.00 Bottle
Price: £102.00 Case of 6
In Stock
Code: LR131

Wine characteristics

  • Brandy
  • Dessert sweetness
  • 18% Alcohol
  • Bouquet/flavour marked by oak
  • 75cl
  • Stopper cork, ie sherry

South-West France (ex Bordeaux)

Most of the wine regions representing the south-west of France are linked by river to Bordeaux and were once rivals of the Bordelais for trade. It was certainly not unknown for some of these wines to be brought to Bordeaux in order to stiffen the sinews of some of the thinner clarets in days gone by. However, there is more to the region than those appellations and the Vins de pays/ IGPs up-river of their erstwhile rival.

The south-west can be roughly compartmentalised in to four categories, as follows:

Bergeracois: running along both banks of the Dordogne River and including Bergerac, Monbazillac and other ACs where Bordeaux varieties proliferate, ably and interestingly supported by some local varieties.

Garonne: running along both banks of the River Garonne as far as Agen and featuring Côtes-de-Duras, Côtes-du-Marmandais, Buzet.

Haut-Pays: the area north and north-west of Toulouse including Gaillac, Cahors and the Côtes-du-Frontonnais.

Pyrenees: in the area between Adour and the Pyrenees. ...
Most of the wine regions representing the south-west of France are linked by river to Bordeaux and were once rivals of the Bordelais for trade. It was certainly not unknown for some of these wines to be brought to Bordeaux in order to stiffen the sinews of some of the thinner clarets in days gone by. However, there is more to the region than those appellations and the Vins de pays/ IGPs up-river of their erstwhile rival.

The south-west can be roughly compartmentalised in to four categories, as follows:

Bergeracois: running along both banks of the Dordogne River and including Bergerac, Monbazillac and other ACs where Bordeaux varieties proliferate, ably and interestingly supported by some local varieties.

Garonne: running along both banks of the River Garonne as far as Agen and featuring Côtes-de-Duras, Côtes-du-Marmandais, Buzet.

Haut-Pays: the area north and north-west of Toulouse including Gaillac, Cahors and the Côtes-du-Frontonnais.

Pyrenees: in the area between Adour and the Pyrenees. Here you will find Côtes de Gascogne, Madiran, Jurançon, Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh and Irouléguy, the latter of which is in real Basque country in the foothills of the Pyrennes, close to the Bay of Biscay.

The influence of the Atlantic Ocean is surprisingly strong even this deep inland and it merges with continental and alpine elements across such a large area to provide moist spring weather and wet winters counterbalanced by hot summers and long, sunny autumns just as the grapes are ripening. Naturally, the area is great enough in size for the soils to be incredibly varied across it. Alluvial and marine soils, often gravel and limestone respectively, are common factors in many areas, the former often on rising terraces above rivers or ancient watercourses.

In many appellations and IGPs it has taken the dynamism of forward thinking, passionate cooperatives and visionaries to save the vineyards and indigenous grape varieties of these regions from serious neglect or even extinction. The devastation of phylloxera around the end of the 19th century was particularly bad in these areas and it was not really until the 1970s, and even later in some cases, that a turnaround in fortunes occurred. The roll call of local varieites is impressive and promising – abouriou, arrufiac, baroque, duras, fer servadou, jurançon noir, len de l’el, petit manseng, gros manseng, mauzac, négrette, tannat and peiti courbu. It is a region that should make a curious wine lover’s mouth water.
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Château d'Orignac

Chateau d'Orignac has been owned by the Meyer family for several generations. The 20-hectare vineyard is located in the heart of the Cognac appellation on gently rolling limestone slopes near the Gironde estuary, 50km south of Cognac in the Fins Bois appellation.

Owner Yvan Meyer is technical director for the famous Sichel Family of Bordeaux négociants and growers, but in his spare time he comes back to his beautiful family home at Château d'Orignac to make superb Cognac and Pineau des Charentes.

His vineyards, which share the estate with arable fields and a small herd of Limousin cattle, are planted with ugni blanc, colombard, merlot and cabernet sauvignon, the first two varieties for Cognac, the latter pair for his sublime Pineau des Charentes. Both are made to Yvan's exacting standards, for example ageing in 360-litre casks for longer than their respective appellation rules require, and with a great deal of pride.

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