The origins of brandy are tied to the development of distillation. While the process was known in classical times, it was not used for significant beverage production until the 15th century. In the early 16th century, French brandy helped kickstart the cross-Atlantic trade when it took over the central role of the Portuguese fortified wine due to its higher alcohol content and ease of shipping.
Brandy is distilled from the base wine in two phases. In the first, a large part of water and solids is removed from the base, obtaining so-called “low wine”, basically a concentrated wine with 28–30% ABV. In the second stage, low wine is distilled into brandy. It is usually produced in pot stills (batch distillation), but the column still can also be used for continuous distillation.
After distillation, the unaged brandy is placed into oak barrels to mature. Usually, brandies with a natural golden or brown colour are aged in oak casks (single-barrel aging).
After a period of aging, the mature brandy is mixed with distilled water to reduce alcohol concentration and bottled. Some brandies have caramel colour and sugar added to simulate the appearance of barrel aging.
Brandy is traditionally served at room temperature from a snifter, a wine glass, or a tulip glass. It is added to other beverages to make several cocktails; The Sour, the Brandy Alexander, the Sidecar, the Daisy, and the Old Fashioned. It is used as deglazing liquid in making pan sauces for steak and other meat. It is also used to create a more intense flavour in some soups. Brandy is a common flavouring in traditional foods such as Christmas cake, brandy butter, and Christmas pudding. Also, it is used to flambé dishes such as crêpe Suzette and cherries jubilee while serving.
St Remy is exclusively harvested from the most prestigious French vineyards such as Burgundy, Champagne, Rhône Valley, Languedoc Roussillon, Loire Valley, Bordeaux, and Beaujolais to get the perfect aromatic richness.
Each French wine’s unique features are genuinely revealed in the wines eaux-de-vie ensuring the smoothness and authenticity of St-Rémy.