Armagnac Academies return to New York

16 February, 2016

The Bureau National Interprofessionnel de l’Armagnac, the official organisation that represents makers of the classic French brandy, has announced a date and venue for its Armagnac Academies educational initiative.

The BNIA says its Armagnac Academies returns to the Astor Center, 399 Lafayette Street in central New York on Tuesday March 8.

The day-long programme of lectures and tastings specifically for the trade will cover the making of the brandy and the region in southwest France.

The bureau says candidates will learn all about the history, the people and philosophy, the productions zones, soil types, grape varieties permitted in the AOC, the wine making, distillation methods, the oak used, ageing, cellars, nomenclature and more.

Distillates from the main grapes straight from the alambic will be tasted to show the influence and diversity that varietals bring, blends from the regions will be compared, a plethora of blends from different houses will show the complexity of styles, not to mention six vintages from various houses and Blanche Armagnac.

This year, Jillian Vose, from The Dead Rabbit Grocery and Grog, the acclaimed bar that won World’s Best Bar 2015 at Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Award and a finalist in Drinks International’s prestigious ‘The World’s 50 Best Bars’,  will be a guest speaker. Amanda Garnham, from the BNIA in France will present the academy alongside May Matta-Aliah, the BNIA’s New York Armagnac ambassador.

At the end of the day, a 100 question multiple-choice exam will be held and successful candidates will earn an official BNIA diploma issued from France. The highest score achieved will be rewarded with a trip to the Armagnac region to witness the Armagnac distillation first hand.

The BNIA says this is a great opportunity for sommeliers, bartenders, spirits merchants and importers to widen their knowledge of Armagnac enabling them to reply to demands from their customers with confidence and credibility. There are 36 places available so it is advisable to book as soon as possible. To find out more about the event, visit

The last Armagnac Academy was held in Guanghzhou, Canton, China last November and there will be one coming soon in London.

Keywords: brandy, armagnac

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