Brandy is a distilled and aged spirit made all over the world from all kinds of fermented fruit juices. It’s not just France and not just grapes. Globally, brandy exhibits a rich diversity, from Cognac and Armagnac to Spain’s Brandy de Jerez, Greek Metaxa and more all contributing to the spirit’s international tapestry, showcasing regional nuances.

As we’re celebrating all things brandy at the moment, here’s a short and sweet guide to brandy from around the world. We’re going to leave French brandy until last because we’re certain you already know about it and be sure to check out our ultimate brandy guides for more information. 

Carlos I Imperial XO

Carlos I Imperial XO

Spanish Brandy

Brandy has been made in Spain for centuries. What makes it most distinct is Brandy de Jerez, spirits known for their solera ageing system, imparting nuanced, layered tastes with a distinct, oaky character.

Carlos I Imperial XO

At the apex of the spectacular Carlos I selection of Spanish brandies sits Imperial XO, aged in a solera system featuring casks that previously held oloroso and amontillado. Brandies aged for up to 20 years feature here. 

Italian Brandy

Italian brandy, or Brandy Italiano, often emphasises grape varieties and regional distinctions, offering a range of flavours from light and fruity to deep and aged.

Vecchia Romagna – Etichetta Nera

Vecchia Romagna is one of the most recognised names in brandy. Its black label is a lovely Italian Brandy distilled from Trebbiano grapes in the French Charentais style. 

Metaxa is a household name in Greece

Greek Brandy

When you think of Greek brandy, you think of Metaxa. It’s more accurately described as a brandy-based spirit or a brandy liqueur due to its unique production process and composition, however. It’s made by blending grape brandies aged in oak casks with muscat wines from the Aegean islands and a secret bouquet of Mediterranean botanicals. The distillation of wine and ageing in wood are brandy-like, while the addition of wine and botanicals sets it apart. It’s a unique spirit and a very tasty one at that. 

Metaxa 12 Stars

Metaxa 12 Stars is the classic, the one you see across the world on bar shelves. It’s affordable, tasty, and can be sipped on its own or mixed – whatever your preference.

German Brandy

Known as Weinbrand in Germany, a term coined by Hugo Asbach after the word Cognac was ruled to be only used for French spirits. The Asbach brand dates back to 1892 and is almost synonymous with German brandy. German brandy might not get the limelight French or Spanish brandy does and people may be more familiar with Schnapps. But there’s some fine spirit here to enjoy. 

Asbach Original 3 Year Old

Asbach Uralt is the most famous expression, often mixed with cola in traditional Berlin pubs. It was relaunched as this delightful brandy, produced from 25 different distillations, and matured for three years in French Limousin oak casks.  

Somerset Cider Brandy Company

Julian Temperley from the Somerset Cider Brandy Company

English Brandy

Though less common, English brandy has been gaining traction, with small distilleries producing artisanal versions using traditional methods, focusing on local ingredients and innovation. Where there’s wine, there’s brandy, but the burgeoning English wine scene isn’t the only inspiration for brandy making, with orchard fruits often used too. 

Somerset 5 Year Old Cider Brandy

This is a fine example of a cider brandy, made entirely with apples from Somerset, matured in oak casks for five years. It’s superbly rich and flavoursome, with sweetness and spice in good balance.

Armenian Brandy

Armenian brandy is one of those not-so-hidden secrets in the drinks world. While it might not be the first thought people have about fine brandy, once you know about it, you find a spirit revered for its quality and tradition that meant it was even Winston Churchill’s brandy of choice. Armenian brandy often undergoes long ageing in oak, resulting in a rich, deep flavour profile.

Ararat Erebuni 30 Year Old

Incredibly well-aged Armenian brandy from Ararat, made with a blend of 30 different brandies and then matured for 30 years.

American Brandy

American brandy is a diverse and evolving category, with spirits made in traditional styles as well as innovative expressions distilled from a variety of fruits, including grapes, apples, and cherries. 

Copper & Kings

American brandy makers Copper & Kings

Copper & Kings Brandy 4 Year Old (That Boutique-y Brandy Company)

From Butchertown in Louisville, Kentucky, this impressive grape-based brandy was pot-distilled from moscatel grapes and matured for four years in a combo of Grenache, Mourvedre, and Shiraz wine casks. Copper & Kings are producers worth keeping in mind. 

French Brandy

Renowned for Cognac and Armagnac, French brandy is celebrated for its strict geographical designation, meticulous ageing, and blending processes, producing smooth, complex spirits with rich flavour profiles.


Produced in the Cognac region of France, this world-renowned brandy must meet strict production criteria, including double distillation in copper pot stills and ageing in French oak barrels. Cognac is celebrated for its complex flavours, ranging from fruity and floral to spicy and deep.

Top examples:

Glenmorangie Cognac Cask Finish

Cognac casks at Hine


Armagnac, hailing from Gascony, France, is the country’s oldest brandy, traditionally distilled once in a continuous still, allowing for a robust, full flavour. It’s aged in oak casks, gaining nuanced characteristics over time, including notes of plum, apricot, and vanilla.

Top examples:


A distinct apple (or pear) brandy from the Normandy region in France, Calvados is produced via fermentation of fruit into cider, followed by distillation and ageing in oak barrels. It offers a rich palette of flavours, from fresh apple and pear to complex, woody notes.

Top examples: