Brandy (from brandywine, derived from Dutch brandewijn, “gebrande wijn” “burned wine” is a spirit produced by distilling wine. Brandy generally contains 35–60% alcohol by volume (70–120 US proof) and is typically taken as an after-dinner drink. Some brandies are aged in wooden casks, some are coloured with caramel colouring to imitate the effect of aging, and some brandies are produced using a combination of both aging and colouring.
In broader sense, the term “brandy” also denotes liquors obtained from distillation of pomace (pomace brandy) or mash or wine of any other fruit (fruit brandy). These products are also named eaux-de-vie.
Varieties of wine brandy can be found across the winemaking world. Among the most renowned are Cognac and Armagnac from Southwestern France.
“There was a pause. The Governor’s cigar had gone out. He spent a moment or two getting it going again. When he spoke it seemed to Bond that even tone had gained a spark of life, of interest. The governor said: “There was a man I knew once who must have had the same ideas as you. He fell in love with an air hostess and married her. Rather an interesting story, as a matter of fact. I suppose,” the Governor looked sideways at Bond and gave a short self-deprecatory laugh, “you see quite a lot of the seamy side. This story may seem to you on the dull side. But would you care to hear it?”
“Very much. He put enthusiasm into his voice. He doubted if the Governor’s idea of what seamy was the same as his own, but at least it would save him from making any more asinine conversation. Now to get away from this damnably cloying sofa. He said: “Could I have some more brandy?” He got up, dashed an inch of brandy into his glass and, instead of going back to the sofa, pulled up a chair and sat down at an angle from the Governor on the other side of the drink tray.”