Pineau des Charentes, the sunshine aperitif of the Charente Maritime, is a fortified wine which is made by adding unfermented grape juice to Cognac.
Pineau des Charentes, the sunshine aperitif of the Charente and Charente Maritime
Pineau des Charentes is a fortified wine. It is made by adding unfermented grape juice to cognac
Legend has it that pineau des Charentes was created by chance in 1589 when a winemaker accidentally dropped some grapes into a barrel containing brandy. The resulting taste after a period of ageing was found to be so good that it became regular practice – and a new drink was born.
White pineau des Charentes is the most popular and is made from the white grapes, Ugni Blanc and Folle Blanche. White pineau is aged in oak barrels for a minimum of 18 months.
Red or rosé pineau is made with red grapes, typically Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Red pineau is aged for a minimum of 14 months.
How to serve pineau des Charentes
White pineau is most usually served as an aperitif, it is best served chilled in a tapered glass at between 8°C and 10°C. It is also a good accompaniment for poultry, fish and seafood, and blue cheese and is excellent served with foie gras.
Red pineau is also served as an aperitif, and goes well with game dishes, soft cheeses, fruit and chocolate puddings.
The Markets are the best place to source the freshest ingredients for your gourmet meals. Royan market has all the usual excellent fresh produce. The market is open seven days a week from 7am-1pm but it’s best to get there early– before 10am – to see it at its bustling best as locals come to buy not just fresh fruit and vegetables but also the freshest catch of the day. You can’t miss it … the market is housed in a modern building with a Shell like roof!.
Cognac, the town is a short 40 minute drive away. Cognac is an attractive town with its narrow medieval cobbled streets and elegant Renaissance facades. It is here that the fabled nectar has been created since the 17″ century and that the very air one breathes is permeated by the heavy scent of spirits evaporating from oak casks held in storage. World famous firms such as Camus, Hennessy, Niartell, Otard, Prince Hubert de Polignac, Rémy-Martin, Courvoisier, and Renault-Bisquit are located here; each distillery has its own secret and unique process for mixing the various blends of its eaux-de-vie.
The Hennessey tour is most recomended by our guests, reasonable, hands on and includes a boat trip. http://www.hennessy.com/us/maison/visit/