This paper tests empirically the validity of the Alchian and Allen eﬀect, using an original dataset of French Cognac exports by quality designations. More speciﬁcally, we estimate the impact of trade costs on the share and relative price of high quality Cognac. The deﬁnition of quality, based on the minimum time in oak of the youngest eau-de-vie used in creating the blend, is subject to regulations and is constant and objective, which makes the case of Cognac particularly relevant to analyze the impact of diﬀerent trade costs on the quality mix. Our estimation proceeds in two parts. First, we investigate to what extent distance and customs duties impact the Cognac quality mix from 1996 to 2013. Second, we assess the impact of a variation in trade costs, through the adoption of containerization, on the quality mix of Cognac exports between 1969 and 2013. Our results conﬁrm the Alchian and Allen eﬀect: per-unit trade costs increase the share of high quality Cognac and have the opposite impact on its relative price.