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Barrel Making for Courvoisier cognac

There are several oak producing regions around the world, that are used for barrel production. The French are Argonne, Vosges, Nevers, Tronçais, Allier, Bourgogne, Armagnac (Landes) and Limousin.

Limousin forest
Cognac only ages in oak casks made from wood from the Tronçais and more often from the Limousin forests. Two varieties of oak were selected because of their special characteristics: Quersus pedunculata and Quersus sessiliflora. Those wood varieties are hard but at the same time fexible.

The Tronçais forest is situated in Allier and provides slightly softer and grained wood. The wood from the Limousin forest is medium grained, a bit harder and even more porous than the Tronçais. The tannins in Tronçais oak are popular because of their softness - the Limousin oak is more about being strong but balanced. Apparently a Cognac will extract more tanins in a Limousin oak barrel. It’s the most expensive wood for barrels in the world. What’s more, Limousin oak is known for the rich vanilla-like flavor it imparts to eau-de-vie.

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