Charron 21 Year 1999 Vintage Cask strength Bas-Armagnac
Domaine de Charron, located in tiny Perquie, Landes (the same village as our beloved Chateau de Ravignan) is a small producer, distilling just 4-6 barrels a year from their 12 hectares of Baco grapes. The brandies are bottled traditionally, without any reduction, additives, or coloring. One of the great qualities of Armagnac made from Baco is its ability to work wonders when trading with oak during the long years of barrel aging, and Charron is a fantastic example of this. This affinity for oak is taken to the next level by the domaine, aging entirely in new barrels, which are left untouched once filled - no topping off and no blending of the vintages during the aging process. This makes their process more akin to Bourbon producers than to almost any other Armagnac producer (the mysterious and lauded Lous Pibous stock being a notable exception). The proprietor, Claude Lartigue, stands apart from the general model of producers in the region, who for the most part have been making Armagnac on their family land for generations. Claude began in the industry buying and selling barrels of Armagnac here and there, before eventually purchasing the Baco vineyards that he produces from today. In a world of old family tradition, this forward thinking kind of producer is a true oddity.
The 1999 vintage opens on a nose of candied stone fruit, sandalwood, tobacco, a hint of mint, and floral bergamot orange. Upon sipping, the viscous palate brings waves of orchard fruits like sour cherries and rich dark figs, with buttered burnt toast, cinnamon, and anise behind. The finish lingers on and on, with vanilla and an almost rye like spice wrapping things up. Bottled at 48.5% abv.