I finally got the press release for Remy V, the new product debuting in September in two trial markets- the San Francisco Bay Area and Atlanta. I'd heard the word on the street about this and posted a couple hints to my Twitter feed and Facebook page last and this week, but this was the first I got an actual press release on it.
Remy V is not a cognac because it is unaged- just double-distilled on the lees like cognac, chill-filtered, and rested before bottling. They're releasing the product with cocktail recipes from mixologist Charles Hardwick.
I guess the proper name for this product would be a grape eau de vie or grape brandy. It's not a cognac since it's not aged long enough. It's not a marc (which is French grappa) because that is made from the leftovers of wine production rather than with the whole grape.
It might be close to Peruvian pisco in that it is distilled from grapes in pot stills. Pisco comes from Peru or Chile, though (in Chile pisco can be column-distilled and slightly aged), so obviously this product won't be billing itself as a pisco. Furthermore, pisco is distilled only one time in a pot still and it is distilled to proof, meaning no water is added before bottling. Cognac is distilled twice and usually watered to bottling proof. One would expect Remy V to be more neutral and less grapey than pisco, but it's impossible to say at this point.
So the big question is how the product tastes. I don't know yet, but I can't wait to find out.