Cognac is the classic breed of brandy, with commonplace production beginning around the 17th Century in the Cognac region of France just north of Bordeaux. Brandy of Cognac must be aged a minimum of 2 years (compte 2) represented by *** or VS, followed by VSOP at 4 years old (compte 4) up to a maximum age of 6 years (compte 6) XO, at which point the brandy is perceived to have gained all the benefits it can from the cask and is transferred to glass carboys for further ageing.  Due to it's primitive form of distillation, Cognacs tend to be lighter and more aromatic.