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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.

Boulard Grand Solage Pays d'Auge Calvados 70cl

70cl, 40%
Boulard

Boulard Grand Solage is a sweet, rich Calvados made with cider that has been double-distilled. The eaux-de-vie used in the Grand Solage ranges between 2 to 5 year old. The Boulard Calvados company…  More info

Boulard Grand Solage Pays d'Auge Calvados 70cl
$35.26

Boulard Extra Calvados Pays d'Auge

70cl, 40%
Boulard

After seven years of crafting, Boulard finally settled on the recipe for their Boulard Extra, made with a selection of very old and elegant Calvados. It was certainly worth the time, as this…  More info

Boulard Extra Calvados Pays d'Auge
$360.81

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
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$30.71

Adrien Camut Reserve d'Adrien

70cl, 40%
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
$205.71

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
$119.86

Pere Magloire 20 Year Old Calvados Pays d'Auge

50cl, 40%
Pere Magloire

20 year old Calvados is a rather rare, pleasing sight indeed - oh look, there's some right here from top producer, Pere Magloire! The oak influence on this 20 year old Calvados Pays d'Auge is…  More info

Pere Magloire 20 Year Old Calvados Pays d'Auge
$97.23

Le Clos d'Orval 18 Year Old Calvados

70cl, 40%
Le Clos d'Orval

A well aged expression from Calvados producers Le Clos d'Orval. This Calvados has been matured in oak casks for 18 long years, developing exceptional, refined notes throughout. They've done those…  More info

Le Clos d'Orval 18 Year Old Calvados
$72.97

Lemorton 20 Year Old Vieux Calvados

70cl, 40%
Lemorton

20 year old Calvados, produced by the Lemorton family. While Calvados is often seen as a mostly cider-apple-based spirit, Lemorton use a rather high percentage of pears in their expressions - not…  More info

Lemorton 20 Year Old Vieux Calvados
$109.77

Château du Breuil Calvados Royal

70cl, 41%
Château du Breuil

Château du Breuil guard the secrets to this, their top of the range Calvados, very closely. We're told that it's very old, and that the blend is painstakingly crafted with great skill by the Cellar…  More info

Château du Breuil Calvados Royal
$185.95

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)
$60.46

Château du Breuil 14 Year Old

70cl, 41%
Château du Breuil

A delectable 14 year old Calvados from Château du Breuil. There are 22,000 apple trees surrounding the Château.  More info

Château du Breuil 14 Year Old
$78.73

Roger Groult 12 Year Old

70cl, 41%
Roger Groult

12 year old Calvados Pays d'Auge from the Roger Groult range. XO Calvados must be aged at least 6 years, though these distillers have gone the extra mile on this one, resulting in rich, elegant…  More info

Roger Groult 12 Year Old
$66.82

Adrien Camut 12 Year Old Calvados

70cl, 40%
Adrien Camut

This is a delicious 12 year old Calvados produced at the Domaine de Semainville in the heart of the Pays d'Auge. The spirit is aged in oak barrels which are never more than 75% full. This increases…  More info

Adrien Camut 12 Year Old Calvados
$86.85

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
$25.22

Berneroy Fine Calvados 35cl

35cl, 40%
Berneroy

This is a half bottle of Fine Calvados (Calvados aged for over 2 years), it's a fruity, buttery, creamy spirit from Berneroy.  More info

Berneroy Fine Calvados 35cl
$19.55

Lemorton Rareté Vieux Calvados

70cl, 40%
Lemorton

Domfront, at the south of Calvados, is home to the Lemorton family. They create their elegant, fruity Calvados with a blend of 70% pears and 30% apples. They age the cider in oak for almost a year…  More info

Lemorton Rareté Vieux Calvados
$539.01

Chauffe Coeur VSOP

70cl, 43%
Chauffe Coeur

Made using fruit from the orchards near the village of Cambremer, in the heart of Calvados. Chauffe Coeur VSOP is aged in 120 litre Limousin oak barrels for 6 years.  More info

Chauffe Coeur VSOP
$64.85

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
$156.20

Christian Drouin Hors d’Age Calvados Pays d'Auge

70cl, 42%
Christian Drouin

The Hors d'Age Calvados Pays d'Auge from little-known producer Christian Drouin, spends 15 years matured in oak casks before it's ready to be enjoyed. Following its long maturation, this intense…  More info

Christian Drouin Hors d’Age Calvados Pays d'Auge
$88.46

Christian Drouin - Calvados XO Pierre Pivet

70cl, 42%
Christian Drouin

A handsome release from Christian Drouin's range of Calvados - this is an XO expression presented in a carafe and named after Pierre Pivet, Drouin's first distiller.  More info

Christian Drouin - Calvados XO Pierre Pivet
$145.25

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
$55.10

Adrien Camut Privilège

70cl, 40%
Adrien Camut

Aged for between 15 and 18 years, this is a wonderfully aromatic Calvados from Adrien Camut.  More info

Adrien Camut Privilège
$112.20

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
$34.72

Pére François VS Calvados

70cl, 40%
Pére François

This is the VS Calvados from the Père Francoise, a good entry level expression for those of you looking for a yummy alternative digestif spirit. This has been aged in Limousin oak casks.  More info

Pére François VS Calvados
$35.26

Père Magloire Carte Jaune Calvados - 1970s

70cl, 40%
Pere Magloire

'Yellow Card' Calvados from Père Magloire, who really know their onions apples. This bottling is thought to date from the 1970s.  More info

Père Magloire Carte Jaune Calvados - 1970s
$132.27

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