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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.

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%)
$68.79

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
$51.75

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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$29.96

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
$59.20

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
$32.61

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)
$56.78

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
$31.00

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
$112.56

Domaine Dupont Millésime 1980

70cl, 42%
Domaine Dupont

A long-aged Calvados from the respected distillers at Domaine Dupont - this vintage offering was distilled back in 1980! Would make for a superb aperitif or pair handsomely with a dark chocolate…  More info

Domaine Dupont Millésime 1980
$132.43

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
$81.56

Le Clos d'Orval 2 Year Old Fine Calvados

70cl, 40%
Le Clos d'Orval

A 2 year old Calvados from Le Clos d'Orval - with its bright, lively, aromatic qualities, it makes for an excellent cocktail ingredient.  More info

Le Clos d'Orval 2 Year Old Fine Calvados
$29.85

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
$506.17

Domaine Dupont Plus De 17 Ans

70cl, 42%
Domaine Dupont

The 30 hectare Dupont estate in Normandy has become recognised worldwide for the quality of the calvados produced there. This 17yo is no exception and like all bottlings from Dupont, really reflects…  More info

Domaine Dupont Plus De 17 Ans
$93.95

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
$33.11

Calvados Domfrontais Hors D'age Domaine Pacory

70cl, 42%
Pacory

A Hors d'Auge Calvados Domfrontais from Domaine Pacory, made with a high percentage of pears as well as apples.  More info

Calvados Domfrontais Hors D'age  Domaine Pacory
$39.39

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
$83.07

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
$18.36

Père Magloire - Fine Pays d'Auge Calvados

70cl, 40%
Pere Magloire

Père Magloire's Fine, or VS, from Normandy. A delicious entry level Calvados.  More info

Père Magloire - Fine Pays d'Auge Calvados
$24.67

Domfrontais 3 Star Calvados

70cl, 42%
Pacory

This is Pacory's 3 Star Calvados, which has been aged for three years before bottling. Bright and lively with fresh apple notes throughout.  More info

Domfrontais 3 Star Calvados
$31.20

Adrien Camut 6 Year Old Calvados

70cl, 40%
Adrien Camut

The Camut family has been making calvados for nearly two centuries. This is a delicious spirit created in pot stills, the oldest of which dates back to the 1920s. The result is a big, spiced apple…  More info

Adrien Camut 6 Year Old Calvados
$55.20

Berneroy Fine Calvados

70cl, 40%
Berneroy

Berneroy Fine is a beautiful Calvados with notes of fresh apples and buttery vanilla.  More info

Berneroy Fine Calvados
$26.53

Le Lieu Chéri 5 Year Old

70cl, 42%
Le Lieu Chéri

Five year old Calvados Pays d'Auge from Lieu Cheri, who have 4 generations of experience of general apple deliciousness behind them. Great as an aperitif, or as an alternative to an after-dinner…  More info

Le Lieu Chéri 5 Year Old
$38.07

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
$103.08

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
$68.53

Adrien Camut Prestige Calvados

70cl, 40%
Adrien Camut

Aged for between 40 and 50 years, Adrien Camut distil this the family's stills, one of which was made in the 1920s! The spirit enters the barrels at 62%abv, and after maturation this offers up notes…  More info

Adrien Camut Prestige Calvados
$308.88

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