Baron de Sigognac 1980 Vintage Armagnac will be 40 years old in 2020 and would make a super 40th birthday present for anyone born in 1940. It would also be an excellent anniversary gift for anyone celebrating a 40th wedding anniversary in 2020.
Armagnac is claimed to be the oldest spirit in the world it has been recorded as being distilled and appreciated since 1411 and, in former times, was even used for medicinal purposes Armagnac is also a region, part of the southwest of France and is divided into three “sous-appellations” : Bas-Armagnac, Ténarèze and Haut-Armagnac. Armagnac, along with its more illustrious relative Cognac, are the two most famous of French Brandies.
The Owners of Baron de Sigognac, The Guasch family, have been in Gascony since the 12th century. They have owned the château at Bordeneuve since 1974 and are one of the region’s largest courtier and negociant operations. Today the father-and-son team of Jean-Claude and Thomas look after viticulture, vinification and distillation. The Domaine is almost unique in the region as all its production is distilled into Armagnac instead of wine. Their vineyards are located in Bas Armagnac, which is considered by many to be where the best Armagnacs come from. There is one short column, alembic still at the Domaine (almost 100 years old), which produces up to 50 to 60 casks of new spirit annually. The wine is distilled on its lees, and drawn off at 55 to 58%, depending on the harvest. Distillation is continuous through day and night and manually controlled to account for temperature and humidity changes.
Once distilled the clear, colourless spirit is aged in new oak barrels for nearly a year. It is then transferred to older barrels for a longer, slower maturation. It is here, in barrel, that the Armagnac leaches vanillins and tannins from the toasted oak which lend the spirit colour and flavour. The depth of colour and complexity of flavour increase all the time the spirit is aged in cask, the colour can range from pale straw to rich amber. As Armagnac ages it becomes darker in colour and softer, smoother and more elegant on the palate whilst aromas and flavours of prunes, violets, fig, honey, butterscotch and rancio develop. Part of the alcohol evaporates naturally during the long years in cask – this is known as “la part des anges” (the angel’s share).
Baron de Sigognac 1980 Vintage Armagnac is only available in strictly limited quantities.
This 40 year old Brandy is presented in a wooden gift box.
Also in 1980
August 11th – The Tyne and Wear Metro system opens.
October 3rd – English rock band The Police release their third studio album, Zenyattà Mondatta.
October 5th – British Leyland launches its new Metro, a three-door entry-level hatchback which is designed as the eventual replacement for the Mini.