Cognac. It is more than just a smooth brandy that rich people snifter in a leather-bound chair in a library filled with books they’ve never read. Cognac is a delightfully enchantèé French village that is only an hour away from Paris. By air, that is. If you want to get their by wheel or rail, it will take you longer. Still worth it, though.
Cognac: The Brandy.
If you are going to make the trek to Cognac, it only makes sense to visit the distilleries that provide the agonizingly socially aware with the drink that will ease a million stresses just tonight alone. These wonderful distilleries provide an education experience within an environment that makes the wineries of the Champagne region almost look like shacks. Most cognac distilleries in Cognac are located in lavish mansions. This is your chance to get a sample of what alcohol that sells for $1,000 a liter tastes. A very small sample, of course.
The Cognac Police Film Festival.
If by chance you missed the Cannes Film Festival and your visit takes you to Cognac in April, then you should take in the Cognac Police Film Festival. If your idea of a film festival is a bunch of snooty, artsy films that don’t have a story, then this is the film festival for you. All the movies entered are suspense, thriller or police procedurals. Among the previous winners are such masterpieces of the genre as Shallow Grave and Memories of Murder, as well as such popular hits as 48 Hrs. and The Hand That Rocks the Cradle.
Medieval Time Travel
Pack your camera when you visit the village of Cognac because while the city is also quite modern, much of the architecture traces back to the Middle Ages and Renaissance. The centerpiece of a Cognac is the Church of St. Leger with its impressive spires overlooking a quaint village square that includes those charming French cafes that you think are just products of Hollywood, but aren’t, as well as a plethora a movie theaters even when the film festival isn’t in town.
No, not cheese soaked in brandy. Aside from vineyards France is also quite famous for making cheese, remember, and the Cognac region is a perfect place to check out some fresh camembert and brie. In fact, those cheeses go far better with some warm cognac than with cold wine. France is home to over 400 different types of cheese and even if you aren’t necessarily a cheese monger yourself, you will be fascinated by the process of how cheese is made. Not only can you see up-close how cheese is made, but you can even get some etiquette lessons on how to serve. Cognac is, indeed, far more than just a hot toddy. It is a French village that both teaches and entertains.