Cognac Godard à Fouras

Guided visit to the Galerie de l'Alambic in Fouras

Cognac Godard, trader in pineau and cognac, has created a small ecomuseum in its "Galerie de l'Alambic", in Fouras, near Rochefort. They offer an in-depth visit to the distillation, with a tasting at the end of the day.
An eco-museum dedicated to Cognac

The place looks like a cellar from bygone days, apart from the incredibly-high ceiling. In the past, a café-concert sounded out its beats in this vast timber-bedecked room, before it was turned into a small ecomuseum in 2014. An initiative instigated by Philippe Godard, a merchant specialized in Pineau and Cognac made from vines planted in Verrières, part of the Grande-Champagne Premier Cru. Instead of just restricting himself to a simple point of sale for his products, the trader also invites visitors on an in-depth tour which chronicles the various steps in distillation, the secrets of blending and aging, the history of these precious beverages and much more. And, of course, not forgetting bottling, as some of these aperitifs are bottled on site.

A documented visit followed by a tasting

“The tour is free, without booking, except for groups, which need to book. It’s totally customizable, I adapt to the public. The length of time it lasts depends, for example, if there are children present or connoisseurs who wish to find out more. We finish off with a tasting session”, explains Hervé Pannetier, the happy, designated guide.
Against a backdrop of historic copper and wood apparatus, this self-learned specialist begins his story with a large Charentes still from 1954. “We know that it was made in Charentes because it’s the only one that’s equipped with a wine-heater”, he states.

Guided visit to the Galerie de l'Alambic in Fouras
A documented visit followed by a tasting

“The tour is free, without booking, except for groups, which need to book. It’s totally customizable, I adapt to the public. The length of time it lasts depends, for example, if there are children present or connoisseurs who wish to find out more. We finish off with a tasting session”, explains Hervé Pannetier, the happy, designated guide.
Against a backdrop of historic copper and wood apparatus, this self-learned specialist begins his story with a large Charentes still from 1954. “We know that it was made in Charentes because it’s the only one that’s equipped with a wine-heater”, he states.

Riveting anecdotes

Cognac, made from white wine from Charentes, requires double distillation. The process is rather technical, but Hervé Pannetier explains it in simple language. And, at the same time, shows extremely well-preserved old vats (very high-volume barrels, Ed.) which he says are “made in oak because this wood has good porosity. It comes mainly from the Tronçais Forest, in the Allier department, which is the largest oak stand in Europe, planted by Colbert.

The angels’ share

Cognac needs to oxygenate and breathe. 2% evaporates every year during aging, this is what we call “the angels’ share”, explains the Galerie de l'Alambic guide, before describing the six crus of Cognac, an alcohol which is not classified by vintages but by age brackets.
The guide has a host of riveting anecdotes to tell. Amongst other things, he will explain to you why the customs officers around Cognac were known as cellar rats and how Mr Pineau invited the eponymous drink.

Guided visit to the Galerie de l'Alambic in Fouras
The angels’ share

Cognac needs to oxygenate and breathe. 2% evaporates every year during aging, this is what we call “the angels’ share”, explains the Galerie de l'Alambic guide, before describing the six crus of Cognac, an alcohol which is not classified by vintages but by age brackets.
The guide has a host of riveting anecdotes to tell. Amongst other things, he will explain to you why the customs officers around Cognac were known as cellar rats and how Mr Pineau invited the eponymous drink.

For pleasure

Boutique-side, lovers of liquid souvenirs are in for a treat. Philippe Godard also commercializes highly-original liqueurs such as the Fleur de Caramel aperitif and Cognac-flavoured pastis.

USEFUL INFORMATION

🍷 La Galerie de l'Alambic
Route de Rochefort, Les Valines, Fouras.
06 27 37 09 66
cognacgodard.com

  • Open every day 10h - 20h
  • From november to march 10h - 18h
  • Closed on sunday
  • Free visits, without booking for individuals, on appointment for groups.
Guided visit to the Galerie de l'Alambic in Fouras
USEFUL INFORMATION

🍷 La Galerie de l'Alambic
Route de Rochefort, Les Valines, Fouras.
06 27 37 09 66
cognacgodard.com

  • Open every day 10h - 20h
  • From november to march 10h - 18h
  • Closed on sunday
  • Free visits, without booking for individuals, on appointment for groups.

Fouras-les-Bains 

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