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    Cognacs & the fabulous Germain-Robin “Alambic” brandy are based on grapes. Both are distilled on a pot still like the one in the photograph, an alambic charantais (Armagnac, another famous grape brandy, uses a different kind of pot still). The Cognac region is cool and rainy, so its grapes tend not to make great table wine; soil characteristics have a great deal to do with quality. For that reason, Maison Surrenne does very little blending, preserving the rich variation between the regional soils. Germain-Robin hand-distills high-quality varietal wine grapes from Mendocino County, CA, where the rich loam and intense summer heat make for brandies with exceptional depth and finish.

Germain-Robin Brandy

    POT STILL BRANDY from an antique cognac still in Mendocino County. Hubert Germain-Robin, the first distiller to use wines from world-class varietal grapes, created one of the world’s great spirits. Following a chance 1981 meeting with Ansley Coale, Hubert took an antique still from an abandoned distillery near Cognac and brought it to Coale’s Mendocino County ranch, where the two men built a modest distillery. Hubert used the old still to return to ancient craft methods passed for centuries from master to apprentice. He broke with tradition by experimenting with distilling wines made from premium wine grapes. The grapes used in Cognac, grown in that region’s damp cool weather, produce thin, relatively flavorless wines, not fit for drinking. Hubert reasoned that the rich, complex, and deeply-fruited grapes used to make Northern California’s renowned table wines would produce correspondingly rich, complex, and deeply-fruited brandies. http://www.germain-robin.com

 

GERMAIN-ROBIN Select Barrel XO.  They bottle ten barrels/year (fewer than 400 cases).

Based 80% on brandies distilled from pinot noir. Very complex, very elegant, very smooth. The pinot noir shows up in the incredible finish—subtle yet wonderfully rich fruit. In our blind tastings, you have to spend about double – Delamain Trés Vénérable, say, or Ferrand's Abel – to match it. In 1999, Robb Report picked this as the world's best distilled spirit, period.

 

40% abv              

GERMAIN-ROBIN Craft-Method Brandy.  Unbelievable quality for the price. Outscored Delamain Pale & Dry and Martell Cordon Bleu in expert tastings (1989).

 

40% abv              

GERMAIN-ROBIN Old Havana.  Germain-Robin stopped bottling Old Havana in 2001. Recently they discovered three barrels, now 6 years older. It's wonderful: rich, fruity, mellow. Designed to pair with great cigars, but also, as the reviewer for Men's Journal said, "one of the world's greatest spirits."

 

750 ml / 40% abv               $105.00

GERMAIN-ROBIN Coast Road Reserve.  "Dark & brooding" (Joe Corley). Deeply fruity, nicely oaked. Lots of pinot noir in the blend, so a wonderful long complex finish.

 

40% abv               $72.00

GERMAIN-ROBIN Apple Brandy.  A real delight: clean, pure, wonderful and complex combination of delicacy and great flavor. Depth, unusual length (Germain-Robin's hallmark), and lots of life, without the dead/rough quality found in most French Calvados.

 

750 ML / 40% abv               $65.00

GERMAIN-ROBIN Apple Brandy XO.  Germain-Robin has released small bottlings of apple brandy since 1998. From the early distillations, here's a singlebarrel of older apple, very complex, with none of the heaviness that so often deadens French Calvados.

 

750 ml / 40.2% abv               $95.00

GERMAIN-ROBIN Christmas Blend.  We have a limited amount of this fruity and spicy seasonal offering. Every year Germain-Robin prepares a few cases of this appealing blend, it includes brandies with a little extra spice to compliment holiday food. It's not available in most areas, and we don't have much, so don't wait long to order. Makes a great gift, with jolly old Saint Nick on the label.

 

750 ml/ 40%               $72.00

INDIVIDUAL 9-LITER CASK.  Tonnellerie Vicard in Cognac hand-crafts these 12-bottle casks, using wood from old cognac barrels. These are serious items, and will last for decades. A cask holds one case of brandy, and it bears a numbered brass nameplate.

These casks actually work — the brandy continues to age, becoming richer and more harmonious (at a much faster rate than in a standard 350-liter cognac barrel). After just 6 weeks, the brandy inside becomes noticeably deeper. Many customers create an individual blend by combining two or more brandies in the cask.

It’s best to have a reasonably cool and not too dry a place to keep the cask, so as to minimize the significantly increased evaporation that occurs when you age brandy in a small cask. It’s $250 for the empty cask, plus the cost of the brandy you choose to put in it. The casks make a striking and impressive gift. Talk to Germain-Robin about what you want on the nameplate and about which brandies to fill it with: (707) 468-7896. Casks must be filled within 24 hours of receipt.

 

call Germain-Robin to arrange               $250.00

Collector's Bottlings

 

 

GERMAIN-ROBIN Small Blend no. 1.  One-time blends, comprising some 200-700 bottles, drawn from an unmatched inventory of old & beautifully made varietal brandies. Among the components of 2011's Small Blend no. 1 (220 bottles) are a 1990 pinot noir from Mendocino County's oldest planting and a rich 1983 French colombard, twenty-eight years old. Unfiltered.

 

750 ml / 41.8% abv               $235.00

GERMAIN-ROBIN Anno Domini 2009.  Incredible product: you can't believe that something with so much flavor could be so soft. 300 bottles released annually. We've heard knowledgeable persons say that they have never tasted anything better. Richard Carlton Hacker ranked the AD 2000 as one of his 5 "Cognacs of the Century," and the Spirit Journal named the AD 2001 the category's product of the year, ahead of a $5000 Courvoisier cognac. Almost entirely pinot noir, with a hint of old-vine palomino: the palomino's suavity comes in at mid-palate. Better than Remy's Louis XIII at 1/3 the price.

Only 168 bottles left!

 

750 ml / 40% abv               $350.00

GERMAIN-ROBIN Single-barrel 100% Pinot Noir.  A blend of two 1992 pinot noir brandies, one Napa/Carneros, one Sonoma/Russian River. Pure, focused pinot intensity, long sensuous pinot finish. The 2001 release was "Perfect with five stars" - Paul Pacult/SPIRIT JOURNAL.

 

750 ml / 41.6% abv               $180.00

GERMAIN-ROBIN Single-barrel 100% Muscat.  From the 1999 harvest. Powerful & definitive Muscat, with lots of (burnt) orange peel. We left heavy lees in the distilling wine, which makes for unconstrained brandy. Very long finish.

 

750 ml / 40.2 %               $150.00

GERMAIN-ROBIN Single Barrel Colombard.  23 years old, beautifully soft, disturbingly
easy to drink.

 

750 ml / 42.8 %               $180.00

Infusion Works

Infused brandies, beautifully crafted by Germain-Robin's Joseph Corley. Working with a blend including both youthful and aged brandies, Corley infuses it with a fine assortment of macerated fresh and dried fruit and spices. Craft production at its best.

 

INFUSION WORKS Dark Cherry.  Montmorency sour (pie) cherries plus nicely ripe Bings.

 

              $60.00

INFUSION WORKS Seville Orange.  The peel of the citrus aurantium , using Caribbean sour sources.

 

              $60.00

INFUSION WORKS Exotica.  Madagascar vanilla pods plus subtle spice.

 

              $60.00

Fluid Dynamics



Barrel-aged cocktails. Germain-Robin has been distilling and aging spirits in fine oak casks for 30 years. The ingredients in these ready-to drink beauties Fluid Dynamics drinks are craft-method spirits from Germain-Robin, Low Gap whiskey, Clear Creek Distillery, and Quady, frequently reviewed as among the finest in the world.

 

FLUID DYNAMICS - Three-Bottle Holiday Assortment.  200ML bottles of The St Nick, of course, plus the Brandy Manhattan and the Saratoga. Guaranteed pleasure.

 

              $57.00

FLUID DYNAMICS - Brandy Manhattan.  Barrel Aged Cocktails. Classic cocktails made from craft-method spirits, blended & aged in the Germain-Robin brandy cellars. Enticing mix of Germain-Robin Brandy and Andy Quady's Vya sweet vermouth. Add your own dash of bitters. 33.4% abv

 

1 Liter               $64.00

FLUID DYNAMICS - Brandy Manhattan.  Barrel Aged Cocktails. Classic cocktails made from craft-method spirits, blended & aged in the Germain-Robin brandy cellars. Enticing mix of Germain-Robin Brandy and Andy Quady's Vya sweet vermouth. Add your own dash of bitters. 33.4% abv

 

200 ml               $20.00

FLUID DYNAMICS - The St Nick.  Germain-Robin brandy and Clear Creek's Cranberry liqueur. The blend of fruity brandy and tart cranberry is fine stuff. 33.6% abv

 

1 Liter               $64.00

FLUID DYNAMICS - St Nick.  Germain-Robin brandy and Clear Creek's Cranberry liqueur. The blend of fruity brandy and tart cranberry is fine stuff. 33.6% abv

 

200 ml               $20.00

FLUID DYNAMICS - The Saratoga.  Germain-Robin brandy, Low Gap clear whiskey, and Andy Quady's Vya sweet vermouth. Add your own dash of bitters. 34% abv

 

1 Liter               SOLD OUT

FLUID DYNAMIC - The Saratoga.  Germain-Robin brandy, Low Gap clear whiskey, and Andy Quady's Vya sweet vermouth. Add your own dash of bitters. 34% abv

 

200 ml               $20.00

FLUID DYNAMICS - The 1850.  The Fluid Dynamics version of the classic Sazerac: Germain-Robin brandy, Low Gap whiskey, and a touch of Germain-Robin absinthe. Add your own dash of bitters. 31.8% abv

 

1 Liter               $64.00

FLUID DYNAMICS - The 1850.  The Fluid Dynamics version of the classic Sazerac: Germain-Robin brandy, Low Gap whiskey, and a touch of Germain-Robin absinthe. Add your own dash of bitters. 31.8% abv

 

200 ml               $20.00

Western Grace

A custom-blend collaboration between Joseph Corley of Germain-Robin and a group of brandy enthusiasts who want fine California brandy to get the recognition it deserves: way smoother than whiskey and with much more genuine flavor: the pure and concentrated flavor of sunny California’s wonderful grapes instead of midwestern corn plus oak. Makes fabulous cocktails. Limit two bottles.



www.westerngracebrandy.com


 


 

Western Grace American Craft Brandy.  First release. Scarce.

 

              $45.00

Maison Surrenne Cognac

    Surrenne belongs to Cognac’s largest remaining family-owned firm, comprising four distilleries and eight cellars. Their remarkably extensive stocks of old cognac are held pure & unblended. They select distinctive and authentic small-lot cognacs: single districts, single vintages, even single barrels. No other cognacs come close to matching the quality at these prices. www.surrenne.com

 

Single District Bottlings

 

 

MAISON SURRENNE Ancienne Distillerie 100% Petite Champagne.  This cognac is an unreal value. The best VSOP at the San Francisco Spirits Competition, double-gold medal. It's gotten great press, and it's the best $48 bottle out there. From the home Madame facility, single vintage 2000 bottled in 2008: eight years in barrel is just right for the lovely soft petite champagne fruit. Wine Enthusiast gave it a BEST BUY, twice!

 

750 ml / 40% abv               SOLD OUT

MAISON SURRENNE COGNAC.  Petite Champagne/Fin Bois VSOP, the fin Bois from the family's vineyards near the chateau at Triac.

 

750 ml / 40% abv               $48.00

MAISON SURRENNE Distillerie Galtaud 100% Borderies.  Unblended Single-cask cognac from the Borderies region. Single-malt drinkers love this cognac: bottled from individual casks from the single-still Galtaud distillery (operating since 1800!). There's clay in Borderies soil, so the Galtaud has great body, with beautiful rich fruit (sunnier exposure for the vines). "Serene, composed, elegant ...ranks with the best I've tasted"–Spirit Journal.

 

750 ml / 40.5% abv               $100.00

MAISON SURRENNE Single Vintage XO 100 % Grande Champagne.  What XO cognac used to be, 50 years ago: rich yet delicate, with complex subtle flavors, all that Grande Champagne depth, and a long deep finish (the region has a lot of limestone in its soils). Assembled from barrels from four of Surrenne's aging cellars. This is a very good buy, better than any cognac up to $250.

 

750 ml / 41.2% abv               $150.00

Specialty Bottlings

    The sort of cognacs you might get to taste out of an age-darkened barrel on a visit to an artisan producer – if he was in a good mood. We select these rare cognacs for their extraordinary quality. These are the finest cognacs on the market.

 

MAISON SURRENNE Unblended 1946.  Distilled on a wood-fired still by Hubert Portier, from grapes grown in his family vineyard. The first vintage following WWII, 1946, was one of Cognac’s great vintages, and this man knew his grapes very well. Astonishing fruit and complexity: a beautiful spirit.

 

750 ml / 41.9%               $600.00

MAISON SURRENNE Tonneau No. 1.  Inconceivably rich. A blend of century-old petite champagne assembled in a large tun in 1922, topped off annually for 84 more years. Astonishing complexity: contains dozens of very old cognacs. The average age is probably well over 100 years.

 

750 ml / 41.9% abv               $270.00

MAISON SURRENNE 1875 Heritage.  A family treasure discovered by courtier Alexis Cabanne in the stone cellar of an 18th-century distillery/farm near Jarnac – six rattan-wrapped demijohns whose contents first appear in an 1875 inventory. Almost certainly pre-phylloxera. Exceptional quality with extraordinary presence. Wine & Spirits’ cognac of the year when released.

 

750 ml / 41.9% abv               SOLD OUT

MAISON SURRENNE Cask 356.  We believe this to be the finest cognac in bottle. A genuine rarity, assembled in 1961 by Surrenne’s former cellar–master, Hilaire Guilbaud: his personal blend from the house’s finest old grande champagne cognacs. The blend aged for another 45 years in one cask. Every component is well over 100 years old. 24 bottles imported each year.

 

750 ml / 42.2% abv               $2,000.00

MAISON SURRENNE Lot David Picoron.  Unblended grande champagne from the 1975 harvest in M. Picoron’s hillside vineyard in Verrieres, near Ségonzac, the epicenter of the region. Very rich, with notable finesse.

 

              $350.00




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