Any of the best bartending schools in London will teach you all about the spirits used in a bar. Brandy is one such spirit that is an integral part of any bar. It gets its name from the Dutch word ‘brandewijn’ meaning ‘burnt wine’. It is a popular after dinner drink and a base for many classic cocktails.
Brandy is liquor distilled from wine or other fermented fruits and is normally 40% proof. It is frequently used for cooking or in desserts. There are four basic steps in the production of brandy. The fruit is first fermented into wine. It is then distilled into the spirit which is subsequently aged in wooden casks and finally the alcohol is blended. The type of cask used determines the type of brandy produced.
Bartending School in London teach you about best brandies.
- Cognac: The most popular type of brandy, Cognac, is a grape based spirit from the Cognac region in France. The grape used has high acid and low alcohol content and gives this brandy its unique flavour. Cognac is the base for most brandy cocktails.
- Armagnac: From the Gascony region of France, this brandy is aged in Limousin and Troncais oak casks which give it the distinctive flavour. It is a very strong spirit and is not really suitable for cocktails.
- Spanish Brandy: The Andalusian region in Spain produces a sweeter variety of brandy in which young spirits are added to older barrels. The most popular brand today is Brandy de Jerez.
- Pisco: Chile and Peru in South America produce a type of brandy that is known as Pisco. There are four types of Pisco based on the variety of grapes used, known as Pisco Mosto Verde, Pisco Puro, Pisco Acholado and Pisco Aromatico.
- Flavoured Brandy: A number of fruit flavoured brandies are popular the world over like the peach brandy, cherry brandy, apricot brandy, Kirsch, a cherry brandy from Normany, Ouzo an anise flavoured brandy from Greece. Grappa from Italy, made from the pomace of grapes is also considered to be a type of brandy.
Brandy bottles have a specific labeling code
- A C: Aged two years in wooden cask
- V S: Very Special, aged three years in wooden cask
- V S O P: Very Special Old Pale, aged five years in wooden cask
- X O: Extra Old, aged for at least six years in wooden cask
- Vintage: This is stored in the cask till it is bottled and the label shows the vintage date
- Hors D’age: This brandy is so old it is difficult to determine its age
Brandy is supposed to be served in a brandy snifter. The base of the bowl has to rest on the palms so that the body heat warms the brandy. Popular brandy cocktails include
- Brandy Cocktail: Brandy, orange liqueur, Angostura and Peychaud bitters
- Between the Sheets: Brandy, light rum, triple sec, lemon juice
- B&B: Brandy and Benedictine
- Brandy Daisy: Brandy, sugar syrup, lemon and soda water
- Corpse Reviver: Brandy, apple brandy and sweet vermouth.
Learn about brandy and its cocktails from the best bartending school in London and gear yourself to becoming one of the best bartenders in town.