On 20 October, the World Calvados Day, is an opportunity for Normandy to honour one of its icons, the famous apple brandy Calvados. Established in 2021 by Avallen and the Difford’s Guide, this date is above all symbolic. It marks the peak harvest season in the orchards.
Made since the dawn of time on Norman farms, Calvados is more than just a French apple brandy, it is a protected appellation for spirits. It all starts out with fresh apples, the apples are juiced and fermented into apple cider and that cider is then distilled into eau de vie. To turn it from eau de vie into Calvados, the liqueur is transferred into oak barrels and left to age for at least two years.
Though it is versatile and can be consumed in different ways, Calvados, can be found on the tables at the end of the meal to help digestion. It also makes an excellent base in cocktails.
Ahead of the #WorldCalvadosDay, Calum O’Flynn, Brand Ambassador 30&40, has created a winter cocktail that will warm you right up when the weather gets cold.
Pomme Traditionnelle Cocktail Recipe
“With Winter creeping in, cosy fires being lit and your snuggliest sweaters being taken out of the closet, isn’t it only right that you have a drink to suit the season? Old Fashioned’s have been warming the soul of imbibers since long before Jerry Thomas published the first recipe including the name ‘Old Fashioned’ in 1862. It remains a staple of every bar recipe bible, is easy to make at home and tastes great at the same time as being a boozy cocktail.
Traditionally the Old Fashioned is made using Bourbon Whiskey, however the name applies to any base spirit made with bitters, sugar, ice and dilution. In the spirit of tradition why not make an Old Fashioned with Calvados? The fermentation and distillation of apples has been firmly embedded in the culture of Normandy for centuries, with very little change made to the process. What makes this Old Fashioned exceptional is the use of Double Jus, a Calvados based aperitif made from 100% Normandy apples, with no additives or colourants. The warmth that comes from diluting Calvados with cold pressed apple juice and then aging it in French Oak adds so much depth and flavour to a drink that can be harsh on some people’s pallet.
My recipe is an equal split between 30&40 Calvados XO and Double Jus and instead of white sugar syrup I will be using Maple Syrup. Growing up in Canada we would put Maple Syrup in everything, it is sweet but not gritty, so much smoother on the pallet. The Pomme Traditionnelle is simple like apple pie, or crumble, or a tarte tatin. Just like those winter staples this cocktail will give you a big hug from the inside and hold your hand through the colder months.”
Where to visit distilleries in Normandy?
The Calvados distilleries and estates are open to visitors all year round. Click here for more information about the distilleries available to visit: https://drinkcalvados.com/en/calvados-tourism/distilleries/