04 January 2011

How to drink cognac

Charles de Talleyrand-Périgord was an enduring French diplomat of the 18th and 19th centuries who once reprimanded an English visitor for gulping down a glass of cognac. "The first thing you should do," explained Talleyrand, "is take your glass in the palms of your hands and warm it. Then shake it gently, with a circular movement, so that the liquid's perfume is released. Then, raise the glass to the nose and breathe deeply." "And then, my lord?" his visitor asked. "And then, sir," continued Talleyrand, "you replace the glass on the table and talk about it." But, the visitor didn't reply, how will that get me drunk?

- Stuart Jeffries, Guardian, 3 January 2011

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