Distillation of eau de vie at Chateau Ravignan dates back officially to at least 1791 during the French Revolution, but by historical account back to 1731. That’s when the ancestor of Josselin de Ravignan purchased the estate and declared on an official record that some of wine made from the property’s grapes would be used for distillation. At that time, however, it wasn’t known as Armagnac. Distilled spirits were used for a number of medicinal purposes, poured into wine for fortification, and given to sailors to help disinfect their water supplies during long journeys. Today Josselin is bringing Ravignan into a more modern era. When he’s not faithfully carrying on the family tradition with his father Louis and aunt Cristine d’Orglandes, he’s shaping surfboards and hitting the waves at the nearby Atlantic Coast. The 1985 vintage is rich and rounded Armagnac with dark fruits, caramel, and heady spices on the finish. Josselin's family has been distilling at the same property since the mid-1700s, so it's clear they know what they're doing!
By: David Othenin-Girard
K&L Staff Member
No questions that Ravignan is one of the top producers in Armagnac and we've tried for years to get an exclusive. Unfortunately, their importer the illustrious Charles Neal seems to have pilfered all the best vintages for himself. The 1985 remains one of my favorite brandies on the shelf despite not being one of our exclusives. Also surprising affordable inspite of going through normal distribution channels.
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