IT IS WELL TO REMEMBER THAT THERE ARE FIVE REASONS FOR DRINKING: THE ARRIVAL OF A FRIEND, ONE'S PRESENT OR FUTURE THIRST, THE EXCELLENCE OF THE COGNAC, OR ANY OTHER REASON.
With strong ties to the Scandinavian country of Norway, the history of Cognac Tiffon dates back to 1875. Tiffon is to this day a family run business, and is based at the beautiful family home, the Chateau de Triac, just 5 kms from the town of Jarnac. The Chateau itself has a battle-scarred and convoluted history, dating back to the 11th century, which includes being razed to the ground by fires and completely demolished during the Hundred Years’ War. Today, the family grows 40 hectares of Grande Champagne and Fins Bois vines, overseen by cellar master Richard Braastad, who comes from an old cognac producers’ family.
CONTINUING THE TRADITION
Today: Cognac Tiffon is run by Sverre Braadstad’s grandsons Jan, Antoine and Richard. Cognac is tradition and the family prefer to run the estate in the traditional manner: growing their own grapes, producing their own wine, distilling their own cognac. Cognac Tiffon owns 40 hectares of vines in the districts Grande Champagne and Fins Bois. Tiffon owns a distillierie with 10 pot stills “Alambic”, each holding 2500 liters. 15 000 oak barrels, each holding 350 Liters Cognac, are patiently aging in Tiffon’s 13 warehouses.
Cognac is always made from year’s newly fermented white wine. The distillation process starts once the wine of the year has finished to fermented and will last until the end of March of the following year. First distillation: This process takes around 10 hours. The produce of the first distillation is called “brouillish”, with an alcohol strength of 25 – 35% vol. Second Distillation: Also known as “la bonne chauffe”
it produces the “eau de vie”. During second distillation the “heads” and the “tails” of distillation are separated, leaving only the “heart” of the spirit with an alcohol strength of 70 - 72 % vol that will become Cognac after ageing in oak barrel.
AGING & BLENDING
The eau-de-vie is stored in oak barrels and placed in ageing cellars to be stored for numerous years. Time will age the precious content and will give the cognac its perfection. The finished product is nearly always a blend from several different areas and ages. Each Cognac House its “Blending Master” who decides on the final composition. Richard Braastad, Tiffon’s blending Master, has an overview of thousands of oak casks aging in the dark and damp cellars.