EU court turns up its nose at Finnish 'cognac'

AP News
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Posted: Jul 14, 2011 6:00 AM
EU court turns up its nose at Finnish 'cognac'

You can't make cognac in Finland. No how, no way.

The EU's Court of Justice ruled Thursday that a Finnish company called Gust. Ranin Oy cannot use the word "cognac" and its Finnish translation, "konjakki," on its spirits because that would mislead consumers.

Making true cognac is no simple thing. Only certain grapes can be used. A traditional still must be used. Distillation must be complete by March 31 following the harvest. It must be aged in casks made of particular types of oak, and only in facilities licensed by the Bureau National Interprofessionel du Cognac _ the winner in this court case.

But geography trumps all: If it's not made from a defined area around the western French town of Cognac, it cannot use that name.