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Cognac Lheraud

"There is only a handful of single-vineyard cognacs worthy of the name – notably from the two branches of the Ragnaud family and from Guy Lheraud for most of the 500 or so direct sellers are relying either on price or inverse snobbery"  A quotation from Nicholas Faith's authorative book "Cognac".

The history of the family can be traced back to 1680 when Alexandre Lheraud began to cultivate land in the village of "Lasdoux". By 1795 his son Augustine a viticulturist was granted 10ha's of vineyards by Lord Bouteville.

In 1875 Eugene Lheraud acquired a farm as well as a stock of Cognacs through the dowry of his wife. In 1881 Eugene set up the first still in order to cater to the British market. At that time they were large consumers of the regional white wines, however the transportation of large quantities proved difficult, so he decided to distil his wines into alcohol.

Within a few years they were producing superior cognacs, which the family stored in the cellars of the Relais de Saint Jacques de Compostelle, which during the times of the crusades (about 1000-1100 A.D.) was a station for pilgrims. Today they still store cognacs there with some of the older cognacs going back to 1811.

1931 saw further addition of several ha's by Remy Lheraud wine for more than a century, Guy Lheraud having inherited the family domaine and a large stock of old Cognac in1970 decided to market his own brand  " Cognac Lheraud". In line with the family tradition he only produces cognacs of the highest quality in the top range of old, mature Cognacs, all of which derive from the family domaine "Lasdoux"

The stamp on the bottle is meant to represent the knight known as the Chevalier de la Croix Maron. Legend has it he murdered his adulterous wife and lover. That night he dreamt that he would be burnt twice in hell. The next day inspired by the dream he ordered his workers to twice distil the wine that previously had been distilled once. The brandy was so good that other growers soon emulated the knight and today all cognac is distilled twice.

Area: 150ha's of which 80 are under vine. Located in petite Champagne on the border of Grande Champagne

Grape varieties: Ugni Blanc 90%, Colombard* 10%    *Used for Pineau Charentes only.

Nos. of employees: 10
Exposure: Southwest
Soil: Santonian, a unique form of chalk named after the province Saintonge.

Average annual production 450,000 bottles.

Sales: 45% sold in France.55% exported.

Food /Consumption: Traditionally enjoyed at the end of a meal as a digestive and pairs well with  Wasanbon.  More recently it has be come popular as a long drink on the rocks with mineral water or with tonic also used in coffee. The bottles should be stored upright so the alcohol does not destroy the cork.