Calvados news

3 questions to…Nicolas Garnier

Founded in 1877 in Frênes by Pierre Garnier, this distillery nestled in the heart of the Normandy bocage is a family story.

We met Nicolas Garnier who is cultivating the ancestral know-how of his glorious forefathers.

Can you describe Calvados Garnier in a few words?

The Garni­er dis­til­lery is a family busi­ness foun­ded in 1877 and passed down from father to son for five gen­er­a­tions. I joined the dis­til­lery about three years ago and work with my father Patrick. We pro­duce 100% apple Calvados using a two-band press and a Gazagne column still acquired in 1923, which we take great care of ! Our Calvados are char­ac­ter­ised by a strong fresh and fruity char­ac­ter thanks to the care­ful selec­tion of the apples and the sig­na­ture of our column still which high­lights the fresh apple, with floral and milky aromas. We don’t want to mask this fruit with too much wood: our most recent bar­rels are over thirty years old and are of Cognac origin. The oldest date from 1877! Our vis­it­ors often describe our range as fem­in­ine and delicate.

What are your main markets?

Our area is not very touristy so we sell our pro­duc­tion to cel­lars and res­taur­ants through­out the Normandy region. We also have Parisi­an cus­tom­ers and we have been devel­op­ing in Europe for three years.

What are your development opportunities ?

We want to con­quer new export mar­kets and con­sol­id­ate our part­ner­ships with our cur­rent dis­trib­ut­ors. Recently, we have renewed our labels and pack­aging to make them more attract­ive to con­sumers of spir­its who are not yet famil­i­ar with our Calvados range. The future of Calvados will depend on strong brand iden­tit­ies, in terms of brand­ing, pos­i­tion­ing and organ­o­leptic char­ac­ter­ist­ics. So that we no longer hear from our pro­spects: “I already have a Calvados, I don’t need a second one!” .…when they are offer­ing dozens of whiskies and rums!

Normandy has enough qual­ity Calvados pro­du­cers that wine mer­chants should not be forced to import other expens­ive spir­its… A little pat­ri­ot­ism, for good­ness sake!

Your favourite cocktail ?

The Calvados Tonic : 4 cl of Calvados Fine com­pleted with a fresh tonic. We also test other more elab­or­ate cock­tails but beyond a cer­tain number of guests, a quick recipe allows us to enjoy them too !

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