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According to EU spirits legislation, brandy is a spirit drink produced from spirits with or without the addition of wine distillate distilled at less than 94.8% vol., provided that such distillate does not exceed 50% of the alcoholic strength by volume of the finished product. The term brandy was first used by the German brandy producer Hugo Johann Asbach (1868-1935) in 1896, who called his product Cognac-Weinbrand (from 1919, however, the use of the term Cognac was banned outside France). By definition, the term brandy is actually an exception, because otherwise only those distillate products are called brandy that have been distilled from mash, such as grape brandy. However, such a brandy is not matured in oak barrels in the same way as wine brandy and is therefore also called " Klarer aus Wein" (clear wine brandy) due to its light colour.

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