Photo providedPolitics aside, there are some things the French do better than anyone else. Bread, for example, or being able to make mundane phrases sound classy - like "Lavez-vous les mains avant le renvoi au travail" instead of "Wash your hands before returning to work" -- or making cognac. I particularly like the pear-infused type -- of cognac, that is.
• Belle de Brillet Pear Liqueur:
Maison Brillet is a respected French cognac house with an ancient heritage. Guy Brillet installed the first still in his vineyard in the Grand Champagne region in 1656. Six generations later, in 1850, Vivien Brillet increased the original farmstead's acreage and installed his stills and cellars in the Petite Champagne region bordering the Grand Champagne.
I'm glad he did. Over the years, Brillet cognacs and infused cognacs have come to a consistently high level of quality at reasonable prices.
This amber nectar is a smooth blending of macerated, ripe Williams pears and cognac ("La poire Williams au Cognac") that makes it a perfect after-dinner liqueur either over ice or unadorned. Both the essences of the spirit and the fruit maintain their own characteristics despite the good marriage.
Retails for about $35 for a 750ml bottle.
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