A Taste of Europe
Over the years, our team has forged strong partnerships with a number of European suppliers, particularly in France, Germany, Italy, and Portugal. As a result, we have access to a variety of high quality puncheons, casks, foeders, and tanks in all different shapes and sizes. If you are searching for a particular size, let us know in advance and we will contact our partners for their latest availability and lead times.
Don’t miss this opportunity to own a part of history all while creating a delicious, complex, and innovative craft libation with some European flare.
Our European Puncheons & Casks
Our Cognac puncheons arrive freshly emptied from various small cellars around the Cognac region of France and typically range in size from 400L-600L. Each Cognac puncheon is thoroughly inspected, repaired (if necessary), and pressure tested by a French Cooperage. The wood is made of Limousin Oak delivering notes of vanilla, caramel, prunes and citrus.
Cognac is a French brandy that is comprised of white wine grape varietals. It must be made in the Cognac region of France, distilled twice in copper pot stills, and aged in French oak barrels, Limousin or Tronçais, for a minimum of two years. However, most Cognacs spend considerably more time maturing in barrels than the minimum legal requirement. Cognac flavors can range from notes of fruit, spice, flowery or herbal, and rancio, which helps to describe the sweet yet nutty flavor derived from the oak aging.
Our Armagnac puncheons arrive freshly emptied from various small cellars around the Armagnac region in Gascony, France and typically range in size from 400L-600L. Each Armagnac puncheon is thoroughly inspected, repaired (if necessary), and pressure tested by a French Cooperage. The wood is made from the local Gascon oak or “Black” Oak, though Limousin and other French oak are also used.
Armagnac is a French brandy made from white wine grapes in the Armagnac region in Gascony, France. While Cognac goes through two rounds of distillation in pot stills, Armagnac only goes through one round in column stills. Once distilled, Armagnac is aged in new, 400 liter French oak barrels, typically Limousin or Gascon, and then stored in cellars where the temperature and humidity impact the quality of aging. When the dissolution level of substances in the wood is considered optimal, Armagnac is then transferred to older oak barrels in order to avoid an excessive extraction of the wood. This results in a lower alcohol content which softens the taste and allows for more complex flavors to emerge. Armagnac is a more fragrant and flavorful spirit than Cognac.
Tawny & Ruby Port
Our Tawny and Ruby Port casks arrive freshly emptied from various wineries throughout the Douro Valley region of Portugal. They typically range in size from 500L-600L. Each port cask can exhibit a range of flavors including caramel, berries, chocolate, walnut, and spice.
Port is a sweet, full-bodied, red wine made from a blend of grapes grown exclusively in the Douro Valley of northern Portugal. It is typically consumed as a dessert wine though it is also made in dry, semi-dry, and white varieties that can pair well with main courses.
Tawny port is a fortified dessert wine made from red grapes and described as both sweet and nutty delivering a variety of flavors such as peanut brittle, walnut, spice, caramel, and dried fruit. As it ages in oak barrels, the oxidation and evaporation imparts nutty flavors to the wine. Tawny port can also be classified based on their vintage – typically 10, 20, 30, and 40 years.
Ruby port is a bright, red wine that imparts flavors of berries, spice, and chocolate. Instead of oak barrels, ruby port is stored in tanks of concrete or stainless steel to prevent oxidative aging and preserve its bright red color and full-bodied fruitiness. It generally does not improve with age; however, premium rubies are aged in wood from four to six years. Though most vintages are best when aged 20 to 40 years, more affordable options like “reserve” can be enjoyed sooner.
Our Moscatel de Setúbal casks are famous for their floral aromatics and bright, fruity flavors including mandarin orange, honey, orange zest, and dried apricot. They arrive freshly emptied from Portugal and typically range in size from 500L-600L.
Moscatel de Setúbal is a rich and honeyed fortified dessert wine comprised primarily of the Muscat de Alexandria grapes grown in Southern Portugal on the Setúbal peninsula. As it ages in the wooden casks, the flavors of the grapes intensify delivering pronounced apricot notes as well as raisin, caramel and nutty aromas and flavors. Its color varies from dark yellow to light orange to middle amber.
Our 500L Amarone puncheons arrive fresh emptied from a small cellar in Italy. They are regarded as highly unique and an uncommon varietal. The name Amarone comes from its slightly bitter note.
Amarone is a dry, red wine known for its rich flavor profile, robust nature, and high alcohol content (14-16% ABV). It’s grapes are air dried through a process called “appassimento”, causing them to shrivel into raisins. The concentration of the sugar and flavors in the grapes results in a distinctive, full-bodied wine well-suited for aging.
Our fresh emptied, authentic, and extremely rare 225L Calvados casks are imported from a small French cellar. Each cask is made from Limousin Oak, the most expensive wood for barrels in the world, which allows certain characteristics of the oak to seep into its contents and influence the aroma and texture.
Calvados is an apple or pear brandy made in Normandy, France. Distillers can choose from over 300 different varieties of apples native to the Normandy region to make just one expression of Calvados. It’s impossible to miss the appley notes and aromas contained in Calvados.
Other frequent puncheons and casks
Please contact us for availability:
350L Pineau Des Charentes
225L Ruby Porto