Cognac & Pineau des Charentes


A good glass of Cognac unites the head and the heart. It induces reflection and even nostalgia. It therefore seems fitting to conjure up the provincial names of the region that preceded the departmental names, Charente and Charente-Maritime. Records show that as long ago as the 13th century wines from Aunis, Saintonge and Angoumois were recognized for their remarkable qualities. By the 18th century, the region was known for its distilled wine. The Brard Blanchard family has been farming in the Charente for generations and like many other Cognac producers, they have gradually given up polyculture to concentrate on grape growing and wine and spirits production. Presently, Sophie Brard Blanchard is at the helm of the family’s 20 hectares of vineyards and 7 hectares of grains. She produces red and white wines, red and white Pineau des Charentes and a range of Cognacs. Sophie’s father turned to organic farming in 1972 after having some health issues related to the chemicals he was employing in the vineyard. The domaine is one of a small number in Cognac to be certified organic.