Pineau des Charentes is the sweet, strong ‘Vin de Liqueur’ of the Charentais (Cognac) region of western France. It is made by adding Cognac eau-de-vie from the previous year’s distillation to fresh grape must. Red Pineau has a concentrated, rich nose with hints of ripe blackcurrant, blackberry, morello cherries and a touch of spice. Serve chilled.
The cognac house of Charpentron is a traditional and family one, and has been passed down the line from father to son, mother to daughter, for ten generations. The estate, known as Clos de Merienne, covers 178 acres of prime Grande Champagne countryside, with 74 acres of these covering the hills around the estate as vineyards. With such a long history, it's perhaps no surprise that the cellars of Charpentron boast some very old cognacs, some of which are 100 years of age or more.