Capturing the Spirit of Cognac

Six members of the Circle of Wine Writers (CWW) traveled to Cognac, France from April 9th to 12th, 2018 to visit cognac producers from the designated growing areas of Charente-Maritime, Deux-Sèvres and Dordogne.

A special thank you to our member Liz Palmer and the BNIC for organizing this amazing trip. Reports were written (and will be published shortly) by David Copp (UK), David Kermode (UK), Angela Reddin (UK), Jurgen Schmucking (Austria), Charlotte H.M. van Zummeren (Netherlands), and Liz Palmer (Canada), along with photography by Jurgen Schmucking and radio show program by David Kermode.

Along with meeting some wonderful people, we all had some amazing cultural and gastronomic experiences.

BNIC

On our first day, David Boileau, Ambassadeur du Cognac au BNIC gave us a presentation which included an overview of cognac production process, grapes, grades, producing regions, and 2017 export and economic figures.  This all took place at BNIC’s offices which was followed by a detailed tasting.

Six interesting takeaways are:

  1. 8% of cognac produced is exported;
  2. 4 million bottles of Cognac were exported in 2017, resulting in a turnover of €3.15 billion.
  3. Cognac is marketed to over 156 countries;
  4. Cognac’s 10 main markets include: USA, China, Singapore, UK, Germany, France, Latvia, Hong Kong, Holland and South Africa;
  5. Cognac exports have continued to grow in 2017 (three consecutive years);
  6. In terms of style, VS Cognac accounted for half of the Cognac shipments, with volume growth of 8.6%.

BNIC:  http://www.bnic.fr/cognac/_en/intro.aspx    

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