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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.

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
$25.27

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
$34.59

Boulard VSOP Calvados Pays d'Auge

70cl, 40%
Boulard

VSOP Calvados Pays d'Auge from one of the most well-known and well-loved producers of the spirit - Boulard. Their VSOP is made with spirits that have aged for 4 to 10 years before being crafted into…  More info

Boulard VSOP Calvados Pays d'Auge
$37.43

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
$160.14

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
$56.56

Château du Breuil Réserve des Seigneurs XO (2L)

200cl, 41%
Château du Breuil

A 20 year old Calvados from the excellent Château du Breuil. Full bodied with oak tannins, this premium Calvados from Normandy is best served at room temperature. This is a splendidly sizeable 2…  More info

Château du Breuil Réserve des Seigneurs XO (2L)
$169.63

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
$135.69

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
$150.29

Château du Breuil Réserve des Seigneurs XO

70cl, 41%
Château du Breuil

Réserve des Seigneurs XO is a 20 year old Calvados from Château du Breuil in Normandy. This is a very rich and supple spirit.  More info

Château du Breuil Réserve des Seigneurs XO
$78.48

Christian Drouin Réserve des Fiefs Calvados Pays d'Auge

70cl, 40%
Christian Drouin

This is Christian Drouin's Réserve des Fiefs Calvados, crafted with spirits which have been matured for at least three years. Refreshing and vibrant, with hints of spicy oak peeking through on the…  More info

Christian Drouin Réserve des Fiefs Calvados Pays d'Auge
$48.59

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
$197.92

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
$70.21

Le Clos d'Orval Calvados 12 Year Old

70cl, 40%
Le Clos d'Orval

12 year old Calvados from Le Clos d'Orval - rich and complex with fragrant, vibrant apple freshness combined with classic oak-y spices. An excellent aperitif, and could also make for an interesting…  More info

Le Clos d'Orval Calvados 12 Year Old
$52.90

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
$96.26

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
$115.33

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
$28.46

Le Clos d'Orval 30 Year Old Calvados

70cl, 40%
Le Clos d'Orval

30 year old Calvados from Le Clos d'Orval - one of their oldest expressions! An impressively well-aged French spirit, sure to impress as a postprandial drink.  More info

Le Clos d'Orval 30 Year Old Calvados
$110.24

Pâpidoux Fine Calvados

70cl, 40%
Pâpidoux

The entry-level Calvados from well-known producer, Pâpidoux. Refreshing and juicy, though not without depth of spicy, oak-y qualities. A wonderful alternative disgestif if you're looking for a change…  More info

Pâpidoux Fine Calvados
$27.91

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
$31.77

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
$28.11

Roger Groult 8 Year Old

70cl, 41%
Roger Groult

Roger Groult produces Calvados in Pays d'Auge, France, using over 30 varieties of apple for a complex, intriguing flavour profile. Although the laws in Pays d'Auge say you are allowed to use pears in…  More info

Roger Groult 8 Year Old
$59.36

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
$30.58

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
$347.15

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
$178.91

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
$75.75

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