Brandies (Cognac)

Brandy is one of the very oldest forms of spirit. As a general matter, brandy can be made from any fruit or pomace (i.e., what's left of the fruit after the juice has been pressed out).  Certain brandies can only be made from specific fruits in tightly controlled ways. There are many different brandy distillation traditions and techniques. Depending on the type of brandy, it may be traditionally unaged (e.g., eau de vie) or aged in wood (e.g., cognac). The very best unaged brandies are prized for their vibrant aromatics; they can smell startlingly like the fresh fruit from which they were made. The very best aged brandies, especially cognac, are created using complex aging techniques and become a wholly different spirit as they age.