Jim Cormie and a number of his fellow teachers established the link between Perth and Cognac some 27 years ago. The Cognac side of the twinning association is known as "Les Amis de Perth". In the early days many of the members included young families who would make the journey to Cognac by coach, whilst today of course we are able to fly.
Gala Dinner 2019, Black Watch Museum
There are bi-annual exchanges between Cognac and Perth which last for a week, long enough to visit the sites of interest such as Museums, Castles and most importantly the Distilleries. A nice aspect of the trips involves staying for a couple of days "en famille" where the hosts show you some of the local attractions which are off the tourist trail.
Although essentially a holiday there is a pretty full program, quite demanding when you are thrust into a situation where you need to converse in a language which is less familiar whilst attending lengthy dinners which showcase the very best of French cuisine.
In such convivial and intimate surroundings it comes as no surprise that strong friendships develop. However, it is surprising just how often the hosts and their guests become close friends, obviously there are some common interests but seeing the person in their normal environment, is a perfect way to understand more about the country and way of life.
Additional Events and Affiliations
Sunday Lunch at Crieff
In addition to the French exchanges, the Friends of Cognac meet throughout the year at different venues. Activities include a Photographic evening, a visit to the Oran Mor at Christmas, a Christmas Party, a weekend trip, and Sunday lunch at a local restaurant.
Qui, un peu!
Many of our members meet outside the Society and an increasing number have joined the Franco-Scottish Society in Perth who have their own programme aas well as organising French Conversation classes.
Although there is no requirement to speak French, it is nice to be able to at least say a few words when you stay with your hosts and something that is much appreciated. Having said that some members are very proficient French speakers and others who are making great progress in the efforts to learn the language.
A little about the famous drink
Vineyards at Frapin, Cognac
Cognac is made, through a process of double distillation, in the same way as whisky, oak casks are also used to age both Cognac and Whiskey. By alternating the use of the oak casks for Cognac and Eau-de-Vie helps the Eau-de-Vie to develop its colour and aromas. As the alcohol evaporates through the porous oak barrels, the alcohol content of Cognac decreases over time, this loss is referred to as “The Angel’s Share”.
I am reliably informed that Fontpinot is one of the best Cognacs and when you go you will have the chance to prove it for yourself - so come and join us and savour the spirit of Cognac.