Germain Robin Lot 33 Alambic Brandy

Germain Robin Lot 33 Alambic BrandyLingering over a glass of superior brandy after dinner is the type of luxury that we often don’t afford ourselves. But, the holidays are the perfect time to gather with family and friends to revive that tradition. We recommend that you give Germain Robin Alambic Brandy a try this holiday. And, it makes a truly special gift!

Germain Robin Alambic Brandy is not a true Cognac because the grapes are grown and distilled in California along with the sort of innovation we Californians are inclined towards. The result, however, is unbelievable quality for the price. (We are selling a 750 ml. bottle for $59.99.) And, after one sip, you may never turn back to the familiar French Cognacs again.

In the glass, Germain-Robin Alambic Brandy sings and dances. And, it’s not surprising that Germain-Robin tastes better than similarly priced French Cognacs when you learn how the two products are made. Cognac is brandy made in the Cognac region of northern France by rigidly defined methods that include defining the types of grapes allowed and the types of presses used to crush them.

Germain-Robin, on the other hand, is made in a California way: under sunny skies and using grapes grown only in Mendocino County, which is the perfect terroir for brandy makers as the temperatures fluctuate between 100 degrees during the day and 55 at night. Heat develops flavor, and cool maintains acidity. Acidity is really great for distillation. In comparison, the Cognac regions of France is cool and rainy.

They use mainly Pinot Noir, Colombard and Semillon, with a little Zinfandel and Viognier grapes. Germain-Robin ages most of its eau-de-vies in new oak for nine months to one year; then the spirit is moved to old barrels from which most of the oak flavor has already been leeched.

Germain-Robin/Alambic was founded in the early 80s by Hubert Germain-Robin and Ansley Coale, Jr. Ansley is a former professor of classics at Berkeley turned sheep farmer and Hubert came from a prominent family of distillers in France who has been producing cognac since 1782. Each year Hubert, using traditional methods that have been almost entirely abandoned in France, hand-distills 80 barrels of a true connoisseur’s brandy, equal to cognacs from the finest smaller producers. And, one of these bottles could be yours!

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