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Calvados

The Calvados region is located in Basse-Normandie (Lowe Normandy), where apple cider was brewed perhaps as early as the 8th century and, today, Calvados is one of France’s best loved brandies, though unlike the grape brandies Cognac and Armagnac, Calvados is distilled from cider.

Whilst the popularity of French apple brandy grew, taxation and prohibition more or less contained it within the Calvados area, and after the French Revolution when the area was properly identified, the term Calvados was already in common usage when referring to apple brandy. The phylloxera outbreak during the 19th century ruined so many vineyards that Calvados experienced a boom of popularity – it being unaffected by the pest.

Calvados is a very popular digestif, and in France it is enjoyed as part of a “café-calva” – a hot coffee served with a glass of Calvados.

Calvados is distilled from a number of different apple varieties (over 200 are legally permitted), and it is not uncommon for there to be over 100 different varieties used to make a single Calvados. A combination of sweet, tart and inedible bitter apples are used to attain the right balance of flavour.

The apples are usually picked by hand, and are pressed and fermented to make cider. This is then distilled; either twice in a traditional Alembic, or singly in a continuous column still. The former still produces complex, well-ageing Calvados and the latter accounts for fresh, tangy, approachable Calvados.

The spirit is aged for a minimum of two years in oak casks, though it is not unusual for it to be aged for substantially longer – often decades.

Did you know?... ...Calvados is often enjoyed as part of “le trou Normand”, in which a small glass of Calvados is taken between courses in a meal, often with sorbet, as a palate cleanser.

Berneroy VSOP Calvados

70cl, 40%
Berneroy

From the heart of the Calvados region, Berneroy aged this VSOP in Limousin oak for around 8 years. It has a great flavour and they recommend it with the cheeseboard, chocolate, or even as an…  More info

Berneroy VSOP Calvados
2
$29.21

Pere Magloire VSOP Pays d'Auge Calvados

70cl, 40%
Pere Magloire

A VSOP Calvados from Pere Magloire, made with apples taken exclusively from the Pays d'Auge area of Normandy. For the VSOP, Pere Magloire aged this Calvados in oak casks for at least four years…  More info

Pere Magloire VSOP Pays d'Auge Calvados
$31.70

Roger Groult Réserve Calvados

70cl, 40%
Roger Groult

The Roger Groult family distillery can be found in the hills of the Pays d'Auge, where they've been making their Calvados for 5 generations! Distilled twice in traditional direct-fired stills, this…  More info

Roger Groult Réserve Calvados
$36.04

Henry de Querville Calvados

70cl, 40%
Henry de Querville

A very tasty Calvados, Henry de Querville offers fresh, crisp apple notes, with a beautiful rounded sweetness. It may contain a bit of sediment so it's best to decant it before drinking.  More info

Henry de Querville Calvados
$27.67

Domaine Dupont Millésime 1988

70cl, 42%
Domaine Dupont

Well-aged Calvados from the fantastic Domaine Dupont range, distilled in 1988. Explore history via the medium of distilled apples!  More info

Domaine Dupont Millésime 1988
$86.51

Domaine Dupont VSOP Calvados

70cl, 42%
Domaine Dupont

This delectable VSOP Calvados was created by the Etienne family in the heart of the Calvados region. Domaine Dupont VSOP is juicy, crisp and fruity.  More info

Domaine Dupont VSOP Calvados
1
$43.65

Adrien Camut Reserve d'Adrien

70cl, 41%
Adrien Camut

Another very fine, and very old calvados from Adrien Camut. This is a rich, aromatic spirit with oodles of complexity, as you might expect from a calvados composed of spirit aged for between 35 and…  More info

Adrien Camut Reserve d'Adrien
$192.42

Domfrontais 12 Year Old Calvados

70cl, 41%
Pacory

This Calvados from the Pacory distillers was aged for 12 years before it was bottled, resulting in a flavour profile which is well balanced between expressive fruit and bold, oak-y spice.  More info

Domfrontais 12 Year Old Calvados
$44.47

Domaine Dupont Hors D'Age

70cl, 42%
Domaine Dupont

Aged for between 10 and 12 years in Loire valley oak casks, Domaine Dupont themselves recommend this as a good spirit for pairing with dark chocolate cake.  More info

Domaine Dupont Hors D'Age
$57.57

Château du Breuil Fine Calvados

70cl, 40%
Château du Breuil

This Calvados from Château du Breuil is aged for 2 years before bottling, this was awarded a silver and "best in class" at the 2008 International Wine and Spirit Competition and a Bronze at the 2009…  More info

Château du Breuil Fine Calvados
1
$25.46

Adrien Camut Reserve de Semainville

70cl, 40%
Adrien Camut

Aged for between 20 and 25 years, this is a voluptuous, complex Calvados from top producers Adrien Camut. The ultimate digestif? Quite possibly…  More info

Adrien Camut Reserve de Semainville
1
$146.11

Le Clos d'Orval 4 Year Old Calvados

70cl, 40%
Le Clos d'Orval

From Le Clos d'Orval comes a 4 year old Calvados, rich in well-rounded sweetness. Yummy stuff. Ought to go well with mulled wine if you're looking for an alternative to brandy.  More info

Le Clos d'Orval 4 Year Old Calvados
$33.63

Busnel VSOP Calvados Pays d'Auge

70cl, 40%
Busnel

The VSOP expression from Pays d'Auge Calvados producer, Busnel. Following its double distillation, this Calvados spends at least 4 years in oak casks before being bottled, resulting in a depth of…  More info

Busnel VSOP Calvados Pays d'Auge
$35.62

Boulard Grand Solage Pays d'Auge Calvados 50cl

50cl, 40%
Boulard

A 50cl bottling of Boulard's scrummy Grand Solage Pays d'Auge Calvados, made with eaux-de-vie which has been matured for 2 to 5 years before blending and bottling.  More info

Boulard Grand Solage Pays d'Auge Calvados 50cl
$23.60

Domfrontais 20 Year Old Calvados (40%)

70cl, 40%
Pacory

Calvados makes for an excellent alternative to after-dinner whiskies or Cognac, and this 20 year old expression from Pacory would certainly round off a fine meal perfectly.  More info

Domfrontais 20 Year Old Calvados (40%)
$68.52

Busnel Trois Lys Calvados Pays d'Auge

70cl, 40%
Busnel

An entry level expression from one of the bigger Calvados brands in the region, Busnel. Elegant, balanced and sweet with a touch of nuttiness and vanilla on the mid palate.  More info

Busnel Trois Lys Calvados Pays d'Auge
1
$27.33

Pere Magloire 12 Year Old Calvados

70cl, 40%
Pere Magloire

Produced by Pere Magloire, the famed French Calvados that was previously owned by Veuve Clicquot. Made, of course, by distilling cider, it's been aged for 12 years to combine those happy apples with…  More info

Pere Magloire 12 Year Old Calvados
$51.55

Château du Breuil VSOP Pays d'Auge

70cl, 40%
Château du Breuil

Château du Breuil VSOP is distilled from fruit from the 42 hectares of hillside orchards before maturation in Troncais or Limousin oak. Soft and rounded.  More info

Château du Breuil VSOP Pays d'Auge
1
$29.84

Château Du Breuil 15 Year Old Calvados

70cl, 41%
Château du Breuil

15 year old Calvados, produced for Château Du Breuil's scrumptious range of expressions. This is a double distilled Calvados, which spends a decade-and-a-half ageing in Normandy, before being…  More info

Château Du Breuil 15 Year Old Calvados
$58.97

Christian Drouin Sélection Calvados

70cl, 40%
Christian Drouin

Sélection is the entry level expression from Christian Drouin's range - a young but flavoursome Calvados from the Domfront region, packed with vivid fruit notes. Suitable for use in cocktails and as…  More info

Christian Drouin Sélection Calvados
$32.48

Pere Magloire Calvados XO (50cl)

50cl, 40%
Pere Magloire

XO Calvados here from the famous Pere Magloire range - just the ticket if you're looking for an alternative to whisky for you after-dinner drinks. The XO spends at least 9 years ageing in oak casks…  More info

Pere Magloire Calvados XO (50cl)
$56.56

Domfrontais VSOP Calvados

70cl, 42%
Pacory

VSOP Calvados from little-known producer, Pacory. Very light and easy-going with plenty of fruit up-front.  More info

Domfrontais VSOP Calvados
$36.71

Boulard La Cuvée Vincent

70cl, 40%
Boulard

The La Cuvée Vincent expression from Boulard's Calvados range is made with a blend of spirits that have been aged between three to six years in oak casks before being bottled. With a vibrant,…  More info

Boulard La Cuvée Vincent
$30.88

Domaine Dupont Millésime 1977

70cl, 42%
Domaine Dupont

A 1977 vintage very well-aged Calvados from top producer Domaine Dupont!  More info

Domaine Dupont Millésime 1977
$155.69

Pere Magloire Extra Héritage

70cl, 40%
Pere Magloire

From Pere Magloire's delicious range of Calvados Pays d'Auge comes the Héritage Extra, a deluxe expression comprised of spirits which have aged for 20 years. A fantastic way to finish a rich meal...  More info

Pere Magloire Extra Héritage
$112.12

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