Apple Cider Distillate from France

In Normandy, apples are mulled and fermented to produce an excellent quality cider, which, when distilled, makes a brandy: Calvados. Apples can be: sour, sweet, bitter-sweet, bitter. Most commonly used apple varieties: St-Martin, St-Aubin, Duret, red Bendor. Calvados is obtained by a single continuous distillation in column stills, but in its main area, the Pays d'Auge, it undergoes a step distillation, with the same charentais stills used in the production of Cognac. In the Domfrontais area, Calvados is also obtained from pear cider (at least 30 %). After distillation, by law, Calvados must rest in wooden barrels for at least 2 years, but the best ones stay there for at least 6 years. In the case of blends of several distillates, the age of the youngest is always indicated.


at least 2 years

Trois étoiles, Trois pommes


at least 3 years

Vieux, Reserve


at least 4 years

VO (Very Old), VSOP (Very Superior Old Pale), Vieille Réserve


at least 6 years

Extra, XO (Extra Old), Napoléon, Hors d'Age, Age Inconnu

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