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Calvados

Well-known French apple brandy, which is produced in the department of the same name in western Normandy. According to tradition, the area got its name from a ship of the Spanish Armada called "El Calvador", which stranded on the Normandy coast a long time ago. There is hardly any viticulture in this part of France, which is why the apple and the one made from it Cidre (Cider, cider) high importance. The first documentary mention of a distillery on the Contentin peninsula dates back to 1533. However, where the art of distilling comes from is uncertain. A limited area with a total of 11 sections and a specific cider distillation process became one in 1946 appellation awarded.

There are three names according to the narrower area of origin, or special manufacturing rules. These are "Calvados", "Calvados du Pays d'Auge" (region of the eye) and "Calvados Domfrontais" (30% pears). Around 30% of the apple harvest in Normandy is processed into calvados, 50% into cider and 20% into apple juice. A as Eau-de-vie de cidre Designated apple brandy usually comes from Normandy, Brittany or the Loire, if the brandy was made from cider and does not come from the limited Calvados area or its exact area origin can no longer be proven. Brandies known as eau-de-vie de pomme do not have to be made from cider, but are also made from fermented alfalfa juice without it being cider. Names outside of France are apple brandy, Apple brandy or Applejack.

The basis for the Calvados is the wine fermented from must of apples and to a small extent also pears. A total of 48 apple and some pear varieties are permitted (as with cider). As a rule, this should be a mixture of 40% sweet, 40% bitter and 20% sour apples. After fermentation, the cider is only 4% vol, so it is done just like with the cognac, a two distillation (fractional process). The result of the first pass with an alcohol content of approx. 25% vol is also called "petit eau" (small water). After a short period of storage, the second burn takes place. 70% vol must be reached. By storing it in oak or chestnut barrels, the initially fruity calvados gradually becomes fuller and softer.

Its color darkens and it takes on the taste of brandy with an apple aroma. Easy with caramel colored, but mostly not sweetened (therefore very dry), it is reduced to about 40 to 50% vol drinking strength after at least one year of storage in oak barrels with distilled water. After that, there is usually a blend of different vintages. After maturation, there are the names VO or Vieille Réserve (4 years), VSOP (5 years), as well as Napoleon, Hors d'Age or XO (6 years). Calvados is extremely popular in France digestif, but is also drunk in between for multi-course menus in order to "create space in the stomach". This is called "faire le trou normand" (making a Norman hole).

Complete lists of the numerous cellar techniques, as well as the types of wine, sparkling wine and distillate regulated by wine are below winemaking contain. There is extensive wine law information under the keyword wine law,

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