The history of brandy making at St Agnes Distillery goes back to 1925 where Carl Angove travelled to Cognac to learn the art from the world’s best. He wanted to create a spirit of iconic world standard and a uniquely Australian brandy that was lighter and more delicate than anything previously produced.
The Angove Family has been been growing grapes and making wine in South Australia for five generations. The rich, red loam soils over ancient limestone of South Australia’s Riverland region help produce grapes that are ideal for making world-class yet uniquely Australian brandy.
The grapes are fermented in a tank before distillation, which takes place over just three months of the year, usually beginning during the early days of vintage in February. All St Agnes brandies are double distilled using heritage copper pot stills. The speed at which the eau de vie leaves the still is carefully monitored by eye to ensure it is moving slowly enough. Every brandy is differently distilled with eventual age in mind.
Like all great businesses, St Agnes decided to extend their offering by creating a mixable brandy for the bar scene that had good flavour and wasn’t expensive in price. St Agnes collaborated with ten of Australia’s best bartenders to craft a uniquely Australian spirit designed to be mixed with your favourite cocktail. With an Alcohol By Volume (ABV) upped to 44%, the brandy is big and bold, delivering flavour and length to the drink.
The brandy is made from colombard, chardonnay and doradillo grapes and matured in a mixture of ex wine, tawny and sherry casks. We were fortunate enough to sample the Bartender’s Cut brandy on its own and mixed in with several cocktails. The brandy was warm, wintery and inviting with aromas of cooking spice, vanilla, honey, Christmas cake, lifted orange peel, cinnamon and nutmeg.
The St Agnes Distillery Bartender’s Cut brandy is a game changer for bartenders across the country. The brandy is available at all good bars and independent liquor stores.