Hardly we hear anybody saying that brandy is there favorite drink. Well you can’t really blame anyone!
Most of people are not really aware of how exactly you should consume brandy.
For all those you are not well aware or have never tasted it. Let’s start with –
What is Brandy?
Brandy is a slightly strong alcoholic beverage made from fermented fruit juice or distilled wine. Brandy is usually aged in oak barrels which increases the alcoholic content, which gives it the strong color. Brandy has been in existence since the 12th Century and was originally only made by apothecaries and doctors to be used as medicine.
Popular types of brandies used around the world are include Armagnac, Cognac, American brandy, Pisco, Apple brandy, Eaux de vie and Brandy de Jerez.
Brandy has about 30-60% alcohol content. Brandy actually comes from a Dutch word ‘brandewijn’ or ‘burnt wine’. Brandy is usually enjoyed as an after-dinner drink. Brandy is not like a let’s drink all evening kind of a drink.
To put it in perspective an ounce of brandy has about 65 calories. On the other hand flavored brandy has more than 80 calories.
Brandy has different aging levels namely AC, VS, VSOP, XO, Hors d’age and Vintage.
AC which has been aged for at least two years in a barrel
VS also called as very special which has been in a barrel for a minimum of 3 years
VSOP which is Very Superior Old Pale is in the barrel for a minimum of 5 years
XO or Extra Old, Napoleon or Vieille Reserve has to be kept in the barrel for a minimum of 6 years
Vintage is aged in the barrel and marked with the vintage date when bottled
Hors D’age is really old brandy and you should never mix it with anything. Sip and savor every sip.
How to drink brandy?
Brandy is supposed to be drink neat at room temperature. It should be drank from a wine glass, a tulip glass or a snifter glass.
Since it is a drink which people drink when the outside temperature is cold, room temperature is ideal. When consumed at room temperature it compliments holding the glass cupped in the palm or by gentle heating.
You need to appreciate the aroma of brandy when drinking it. That is the best part of brandy. Add only that much so when you lay the glass on it’s side none tips out the rest of the glass is to capture the aroma so you can smell it and taste at the same time.
As a beverage brandy should be sipped, starting with small sips that gradually grow larger. Ideally you should never add water or ice to your brandy. Room temperature brings the best out of brandy.
The only thing you should add to your brandy is more brandy.
This goes for expensive brandy with fine taste. If you happen to choose a low quality brandy then there are several options.
Should you heat brandy or not?
Many people prefer to heat the brandy slightly before taking a sip. Slightly heated brandy enhances the flavor and aroma.
A good trick that you can apply is, add some warm water in the glass, swirl it around gently and just before pouring the brandy throw the water.
Avoid overheating brandy ever because that will spoil the flavor and the alcohol might evaporate.