In the Southwest corner of France, just below Bordeaux, you’ll find gorgeous Gascony. This is the spiritual home of culinary delights like foie gras, and it’s also where Armagnac is made. It’s a grape brandy similar to Cognac, but a bit more robust and rustic. Delord X.O. Armagnac ($55, 40% abv) is a velvety textured spirit to savor. The countryside perfume of this 15-year-old brandy evokes notes of fresh flower, hay, fig and vanilla, with a crème brûlée flavor that fades away ever so gently.
Le Maudit Français
Courtesy Gwladys Gublin, for Experimental Cocktail Club, Paris
Le Maudit Français translates as “Bloody French,” an expression used in Canada to criticize the French in an affectionate way. In this recipe, Armagnac meets Canadian maple syrup for a complementary, fall-appropriate sipper.
- 1¼ ounces Armagnac
- ⅓ ounce oloroso Sherry
- ⅓ ounce orange juice
- ⅓ ounce lemon juice
- ⅓ ounce maple syrup
- 1 dash Bittermens Boston Bittahs
- Orange rind, for garnish
Place all ingredients, except garnish, into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well, then strain into a chilled Champagne flute. Garnish with orange rind.