A Toast with the Home-Brew -- Cointreau -- Another libation unique to Angers is Cointreau. La Distillerie Cointreau, 2 bd. des Bretonnières (tel. 02-41-31-50-50;, is in the suburb of St-Barthèlemy, a 10-minute drive east of the town center. It has a showroom where you can sample and stock up on the fruity liqueur.

Two brothers in Angers were confectioners who set out to create a drink of "crystal-clear purity." Today, some 13 million bottles of Cointreau are consumed annually. Packaged in a square bottle with rounded corners, Cointreau is made from twice-distilled alcohol from the peels of two types of oranges, bitter and sweet. The factory has turned out the drink since 1849. Cointreau flavors such drinks as the cosmopolitan and the sidecar.

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