A de Fussigny cognacs are beautifully elaborated in the company’s own distillery, founded in 1814 in the historical center of Cognac, France, on the banks of the Charente River. The river proximity creates a perfect hygrometry in the cellars and accordingly excellent aging conditions. The house hallmark is to combine traditional elaboration methods with a very modern and innovative packaging and brand image. The proximity to the river make for perfect hygrometry and allows the aromas of the to unfold. The product design is extremely different to that of traditional cognacs, the information on the cognac, such as age, name, percentage etc. is handwritten on the label, which makes it very personal.
Owned by Francis Abécassis, ABK6 is a young cognac house based at the Domaine de Chez Maillard near the village of Claix. Its 250 hectares of vineyards produce high quality eaux-de-vie, which are used to blend this contemporary cognac. The goal of this label is to introduce a young and modern spirit to the traditional drink and at the same time value the quality. Not only its name, an abbreviation of the owner’s name, but also its blog, facebook and twitter pages show the target group of the company. ABK6 owns its own brand as well as the brands Leyrat and and Réviseur. Together, the three brands of the company have been awarded over 60 awards in the past years.
The vintage eaux-de-vie of A.E. Dor are one the few that are left from before phylloxera struck the region in 1874. Adapting to current developments in the cognac industry and the luxury market in general, the company, today headed by Jacques Riviere, have launched a new range of products that target a wider and more international group of consumers.
This small family-run cognac producer from Berneuil insists that their cognac is not merely of standard quality. This can be validated by the fact that the Petit family works with traditional methods handed down form their grandparents and harvest the grapes manually. This is almost extinct in the cognac industry due to growing demand and the production of high quantities. André Petit came to some sort of fame in the industry by stopping their contract with Hennessy in the 1960s and deciding to produce themselves. Like many small producers from the Cognac region, they also specialize in the making of Pineau des Charentes.
Cognac Ansac is part of the larger company, Jules Gautret, which is in turn part of the much larger co-operation UniCognac. The cognac made by Ansac is produced from grapes from both the Petite Champagne and Fin Bois regions of Cognac. Producing three different grades of cognac, the house has a history that dates back to the year 1847.
When Time Magazine reported that ‘the best cognac you’ve never heard of is Audry’ back in 2005, this small, artisan cognac house was catapulted into the limelight. Since then, their products have become known in countries throughout the world – including those in Europe, Scandinavia and North America. However, just because a few years ago the name of Audry Cognac had not really been heard of outside of France, this does not mean that the house doesn’t have a long and illustrious history. This family run cognac house has a story that dates back to 1878.
Bache-Gabrielsen is a medium-sized family-run cognac house with an international history. The cognac house is looking forward to its upcoming 100th anniversary, with the creation of the company in 1905. With its clean design, Bache-Gabrielsen takes an important position in the cognac market, exporting mainly to Scandinavian countries. Hervé Bache-Gabrielsen, the fourth generation head of the company, is well aware that the cognac industry is undergoing changes, with the international market being heavily developed and marketing strategies refined to cater a younger, trendier consumer-base. Considering the size of the business in comparison to the big cognac houses, it is surprising to find out that it holds the market leadership in cognac sales in Norway!
The vines of Bel Ange Cognac cover 23 hectares of prime Petite Champagne countryside. Four generations of knowledge has been handed down over the years, and today this independent vineyard produce both cognac and Pineau des Charentes. Owned and run by Dominic and Aymeric Lheritaud, they continue to produce eaux-de-vie in the traditional methods, offering a small but quality range that is sold directly to the public.
The family cognac house of Bernard Begaud covers 16 hectares of Fins Bois terrain, and is located about 13 kms west of the city of Cognac. The art of producing wine and cognac has been handed down through three generations since 1895, and today is in the capable hands of Bernard and Chantel Begaud. Offering a range of cognacs to suit all pockets and palates, this artisan house creates their wares in a strictly traditional manner, yet has embraced the power of modern technology as an outlet to increase both awareness and sales. The current owners take full advantage of the knowledge and expertise handed down through the generations to ensure that their cognacs and other products are of the highest quality possible.
Boasting over two centuries of history and four generations of wine growers and producers, the house of Bernard Boutinet produces a range of cognacs to suit all palates. Located solely in the terroir of Fins Bois, this artisan estate sells its wares directly to the general public. Their brands are easily spotted by the use of the region’s ‘La Caleche’ emblem on the classic style labels that grace the front of all its bottles and decanters. Staying true to the traditional methods of creating the finest eaux-de-vie, Bernard Boutinet Cognac is regarded as a producer of a small but distinguished range of good quality cognacs.
The estate of Cognac Birius covers 23 hectares of Petite Champagne vineyards at Biron, in the Charente Maritime. Today the vineyard and cognac house is run by Anne and Philippe Bouyer, direct descendants of the original vineyard owners. Although small in area, Cognac Birius produce a range of cognacs, along with wines, liqueurs and Pineau des Charentes, which they both export and sell directly to the public.
Birkedal Hartmann is a rare example of a successful cognac house that today collaborates with producers and master blenders rather than producing its own eaux-de-vie. This allows Birkedal Hartmann to focus on modern marketing and distribution strategies, as the production is entirely outsourced. This does not however imply that the tradition of the house, founded in the late 1800s, has been neglected. On the contrary: With its extremely smart marrying of traditional and contemporary culture, the cognac house Birkedal Hartmann managed to be amongst the first to launch a product with US celebrity rapper Ludacris. The cognac called CONJURE has shown to be a huge success in the US market, positioning Birkedal Hartmann as one of the most innovative cognac companies today.