This Lannemaignan (a small French town with just over 100 residents) distiller is another of the tiny producers that make up the patchwork industry of Armagnac. Lannemaignan is found in the far west of the Armagnac region, producing a marvellous style of spirit known as Bas-Armagnac. This is seen as a distinct variety, as the soil of the region is acidic, rocky and rich with limestone. Whilst this may sound unappetising, it is in fact ideal for the production of many of the rarer and more difficult to grow grape varieties that Armagnac producers prefer. One such producer is Michel Lamothe, who has been manager of the Domaine for several decades. He continues to use traditional continuous Armagnac alembics to produce his spirit, which is also non chill-filtered to retain its chewy mouthfeel. This bottling is marked as Hors d’Age, which means that the youngest spirit in the blend must be 10 years old at the very least. In reality, large quantities of the blend is likely to exceed this age. It is a maturity that perfectly suits the spirit, with the inherent fruity flavours of the spirit playing off wonderfully against the leathery, dark, caramel notes of the French oak cask.