There are several food products that are called "Napoleon". Cognac, which bears the name of the great commander, has long been known throughout the world.
How it all began
The history of the cognac business has quite deep roots. Since the 16th century, when it became necessary to transport its goods far beyond the borders of the country, winemaking companies began to produce a special kind of products, which later became known as "cognac". And by the 19th century he had become quite famous and respected by many. But where is Napoleon? Cognac, of course, was the Emperor's favorite drink, but that's not the point. Simply Bonaparte always preferred all the best. He treated with unlimited respect for good alcohol and could accurately determine which of the proposed products is of the highest quality. There is an official classification of this kind of alcohol, but sometimes the word "Napoleon" is added to the names of some drinks. Cognac with such an amendment has a specific feature. The fact is that in this case we are talking about restraint. Initially, a good brandy is considered to be not less than six years old. The "Napoleon" this bar is much higher. Here it is already about ten or even twenty years.
Napoleon loved cognac and always, going to war, took with him enough of this hot drink. After violent battles, in a difficult situation or in times of serious reflection, a glass of good aromatic alcohol could relieve fatigue, restore strength and help make the right decision. It's no secret that the greatest minds of this world liked to drink, and did it with special pleasure. Historians argue that during the Patriotic War of 1812 , Napoleon I Bonaparte, going to Russia, took with him several barrels of excellent French cognac. But the battle was lost, and the great commander, leaving the country, was forced to leave all that was superfluous, which prevented him from moving quickly. They say that along the way he buried not only the stolen jewels, but also barrels with his favorite drink. This is the decision that Napoleon accepted. Cognac, probably, is still stored somewhere under the earth. Although no one has ever managed to find it.
Evaluation of the Emperor
The first cognac, which received the highest approval of the emperor, was "Courvoisier Napoleon." Everything happened by accident. In 1811 the company "Courvoisier" was still little-known and did not differ from the wineries of other provinces. Suddenly there was a rumor that the monarch himself was going to visit the plant. Panic began in the shops. Everyone tried to establish an ideal order. It got to the point that they even began to wash every bottle. The hosts decided to show Bonaparte the best drinks, but an amazing event happened. During the visit, Napoleon, passing between the rows of barrels of wine, suddenly stopped near one of them. It housed the oldest sample of cognac. It is unclear what prompted the emperor to take this step, but, having tried the beverage himself, he came to indescribable delight. Since then, the small company has become a constant supplier of the imperial court, and the drink "Courvoisier Napoleon" was considered the best French brandy.
Everything has its own price
Buy a good product is always difficult. Especially when it comes to cognac. Shop counters are now full of surrogates. And suddenly among them there is a real product? How to choose a good drink from such a variety and not make a mistake? To begin with, you should carefully read the label, which contains basic information. With regard specifically to cognac products, there are two main factors, which should be emphasized:
1. The place of growth of grapes.
2. Extract the finished drink.
In the international market, brandy can only be called a product made using special technology from raw materials grown in one of the six "crocks" (land areas) of the French Cognac region. According to the established classification, the following exposure ranges are adopted:
- VS - at least two years. This is the minimum period that must be carried out in an oak barrel before going on sale.
- Supertor - not less than three years.
- VSOP, VO, Vieux, Reserve - at least four years.
- VVSOP, Grande Reserve - not less than five years.
- XO, Extra, Royal, Tres Vieux, Napoleon, Vieille Reserve - at least six years.
According to this classification, you can imagine how much the real cognac "Napoleon" will cost. The price for 1 bottle of this 0.5 liter drink varies from 45 to 60 euros. A collection of exclusive copies at auctions sell for 10 thousand dollars.
Recently the production of alcoholic beverages is being taken care of by everyone. But only the real master-winemakers are able to produce such a complex product as cognac. In the Republic of Kazakhstan, several wine and vodka enterprises do this, but only a few manage to achieve the desired result. The assortment list of really worthy drinks is small, but there are quite good examples. For example, the cognac "Napoleon". Kazakhstan produces a drink with a three-year exposure, corresponding to the range of VS The product has a rich, bright taste and a pleasant aroma. True, the Kazakhs themselves are more proud of their other creation. Cognac "Alfarabi" can be called a real achievement. For its production, alcohol, manufactured according to the classical technology from the production of the best vineyards of Georgia, is used. The aging of the drink (6 years) allows you to refer it to the Napoleon range, and this already speaks for the quality of the product. Experts note its delicate, velvety taste with distinct fruit notes and a soft aftertaste. But some ordinary consumers have their own opinion on this matter.
Products of the cognac house "Camus"
"Camus" is a brand of cognac, which was created in 1893 and for a few years has gained fame and recognition throughout the world. He was particularly popular in Russia. Tsar Nicholas II himself had a weakness for this wonderful drink. He even signed a contract with the owner of the company to supply his products to the court. In gratitude for this Gustave Camus created for the emperor a special cognac "Camus Napoleon". Needless to say, that during the production all the wishes and taste preferences of the Russian monarch were taken into account? The composition of the blend of this drink includes more than one hundred different alcohols. The combination was selected by the owner himself. As a result, a rather complex original bouquet turned out. An unusual taste is complemented by a delicate aroma of dried fruits, which gives the drink a special charm. This cognac practically does not need a snack. This is a real work of wine making. But he, like any masterpiece in general, is very expensive. For example, most Russians, as before, and nowadays, such a pleasure simply can not afford. But there are people who still can afford this royal drink.
"Gift" from France
Even in the Soviet times it was believed that the best wine product in the world is the cognac "Napoleon". The French trading house "Camus" supplied it to our country since 1959 for thirty years. In those years, very few people really knew about drinks. Perhaps that's why the excerpt of Napoleon was taken for the title. Later, the Poles established a counterfeit under the same name and for a long time brought it to our country. The fake was flashy: a matte bottle, a colorful label. This embarrassed the buyer and made him believe that he had a real product of the highest quality in his hands. But this drink was only brandy (and then at best). After all, for the production of cognac you need a certain kind of grapes, which grew in a particular French region. Then the product requires special processing by complex technology and aging for a long time and under certain conditions. But the Poles did not burden themselves with such problems, and our people drank an incomprehensible liquid for a long time, marveling at its suspicious and unpleasant taste.
Only a real French drink can be called "Cognac Napoleon". Exposure in this case should be at least six years. The name of the great commander is not the name of the drink, but the brand according to the approved classification. To achieve a certain quality, the product must pass a rather complex path. First, a specially prepared mixture of alcohols (blend) for two months is in completely new oak barrels. During this time, the liquid acquires an original vanilla flavor with a slight aroma of spices and a characteristic color. The result is the so-called white cognac. At the next stage, it is poured into already used old barrels, where it is stored for the rest of the time. Typically, cognacs of the category "Napoleon" are aged 12-15 years or more. Such a mature product already has a more complex bouquet and a whole range of flavors: nuts, cloves, and cinnamon. The aftertaste of this drink remains tender, pronounced and slightly dryish.