Cognac vs Armagnac: Difference and Comparison

Cognac and Armagnac are located in Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region and grow nearly 300km from each other in the chalky and sandy soils region, respectively.

Both of these alcoholic beverages vary from one another in various aspects. Apart from the distillation process, the ageing span and other properties of these beverages differentiate them from one another.

Cognac and Armagnac are categorized for better commercialisation by attesting to the label mentioning the number of years of ageing.

Key Takeaways

  1. Both cognac and Armagnac are types of brandy produced in specific regions of France, but cognac comes from the Cognac region and Armagnac from the Armagnac region.
  2. Cognac is double distilled, resulting in a smoother, more refined flavor, while Armagnac is single-distilled, preserving more robust and rustic characteristics.
  3. Armagnac is older and rarer than cognac, as it has a smaller production scale and fewer global exports.

Cognac vs Armagnac

The difference between Cognac and Armagnac is that Cognac is an alcoholic beverage that is prepared by using a grape variety called ugni-blanc (used approximately 97%). It undergoes twice distilled in still pots. On the contrary, Armagnac is made by using four different varieties of grapes, including Folle Blanche, Baco, colombard, and ugni-blanc and grows in riverbed sediment, fine quartz sand, siliceous, and continental clay.

Cognac vs Armagnac

Cognac is consumed as an alcoholic beverage and is also referred to as a type of brandy that is prepared from the fermentation of a selective type of grapes called ugni-blanc, which is used approximately 97% in manufacturing.

Not every region has permission to make cognac. It is only manufactured in the chalky soil region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine and is exported to other regions.

Armagnac is also a type of brandy that is prepared in the Armagnac region, situated in southwest France. It is distilled once on a continuous still procedure.

The Aging span of this beverage is comprised of a minimum of one year and stored in Limousin or Troncais oak barrels. It is labelled into categories that depends on the number of years of ageing.

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Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonCognacArmagnac
What is it?It is an alcoholic beverage that is prepared by using a grape variety called ugni-blanc, which is used approximately 97% in manufacturing.It is made using four different grape varieties, including Folle Blanche, Baco, colombard, and ugni-blanc.
ConsumptionCognac is mostly exported to other regions (Netherlands, England, etc.).Armagnac is mostly local.
DistilledFor the distillation, it is distilled twice in still pots.It is distilled once.
Ageing SpanThe ageing span of this alcoholic beverage is comprised of a minimum of two years and stored in local gason oak barrels. The ageing span of this alcoholic beverage is comprised of a minimum of one year and stored in Limousin or Troncais oak barrels.
Alcohol PercentageCognac contains at least 40% alcohol.Armagnac contains around 52-60% alcohol.

What is Cognac?

Cognac is an alcoholic beverage and is more likely to be referred to as a variety of brandy that must be stored for at least a minimum time of two years and made by fermentation of selective types of grapes.

It is divided or categorized into six basic crus, including borders, Bois ordinaries, fins Bois, grand champagne, bonus Bois, and petite champagne.

Cognac is prepared by using a grape variety called ugni-blanc (used approximately 97%).

By considering the number of ageing years, this beverage is labelled and categorized into four main labels similar to that of Armagnac.

This alcoholic beverage is prepared in some specific region and contains at least 40% alcoholic percentage.

cognac

What is Armagnac?

Armagnac is one of the oldest alcoholic beverages, and it is associated as an integral part of French heritage and is mostly consumed in France region.

It is prepared or made with basically four types of grapes varieties, including Folle Blanche, Baco, colombard, and ugni-blanc, and distilled once continuously.

This beverage is prepared in Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region and grows in riverbed sediment, fine quartz sand, siliceous, and continental clay.

Armagnac is labelled with indications that represent the ageing of the beverage, and it would be done like Very Special (VS), Very Special Old Pale (VSOP), Extra Old (XO), and Millesime.

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By volume, this alcoholic beverage has nearly 52-60% alcohol and can be diluted to around 45-47%.

armagnac 1

Main Differences Between Cognac and Armagnac

  1. Cognac and Armagnac are two famous alcoholic beverages that are consumed by people worldwide. Cognac is an alcoholic drink that is prepared by using a grape variety called ugni-blanc, which is used approximately 97% in manufacturing. On the contrary, Armagnac is made by using four different varieties of grapes, including Folle Blanche, Baco, colombard, and ugni-blanc.
  2. Cognac and Armagnac are located in Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region but have different soils, based nearly 300km from each other. Based on the region, these alcoholic beverages vary from each other in consumption aspect. Cognac is an export product and is exported majorly to the Netherlands and the England region. On the other side, Armagnac is consumed locally in France region.
  3. These alcoholic beverages vary from each other in the manufacturing aspect, as they are prepared by using different distillation processes. Cognac is prepared with a twice-distillation process in still pots. On the contrary, Armagnac is prepared by one continuous distillation process.
  4. The ageing span plays a major role in the taste of alcoholic beverages, and it will vary from one to another. For Cognac, the ageing span is comprised of a minimum of two years and ages in local gason oak barrels. On the contrary, Armagnac must be stored for a minimum of one year in Limousin or Troncais oak barrels. Considering the number of years of ageing, these beverages are labelled and categorized in VS, VSOP, XP, and Millsime.
  5. These alcoholic beverages have different alcoholic percentages by volume, which affect their taste and properties. Cognac must have at least 40% alcohol by volume, and on the other side, Armagnac should have around 52-60% alcohol by volume and can be diluted to nearly 45-47 percent.
Difference Between Cognac and Armagnac
References
  1. https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf9045667
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814616301911

Last Updated : 11 June, 2023

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11 thoughts on “Cognac vs Armagnac: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The nuances in distillation methods and aging make Cognac and Armagnac truly distinctive spirits. This article encapsulates those differences perfectly.

    Reply
  2. The comparison between Cognac and Armagnac was great, but it’s also interesting to see the specific geographic and soil differences that influence the production of these spirits.

    Reply
    • Exploring the geographical and environmental factors that contribute to the unique flavors of Cognac and Armagnac adds another layer of appreciation for these spirits.

      Reply
  3. Cognac and Armagnac are truly a representation of fine French craftsmanship. The unique distillation processes and aging methods set them apart from many other spirits.

    Reply
  4. Both Cognac and Armagnac have fascinating histories and unique production processes. This article offers a comprehensive comparison. Well done!

    Reply
  5. The information about the grape variety used in the production of these spirits was enlightening. Thank you for the detailed comparison.

    Reply
  6. The distinction between the regions where Cognac and Armagnac are produced was a fascinating aspect to explore. A great read!

    Reply

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