Cognac is like Brandy (distilled from fruit juice) except there are a lot more qualifications involved. For instance, location. Cognac comes from what is rereferred to as the Cognac region of Southwestern France. Its also made with a white grape juice base whereas brandy has more flexibility. Cognac goes through two rounds of distillation specifically during the October 1st and March 31st timeframe. So, yeah, its a pretty strict process. Cognac also comes with a bit of terminology of its own: VS means Very Special and is aged for two years. VSOP means Very Superior Old Pale and is aged for four years. XO means Extra Old and is aged for six years.