Thursday, 23 May 2013

Le Pere Jules - Pommeau de Normandie

Today I thought I’d do something a little different to spice things up. For a long time I have wanted to taste a Pommeau de Normandie and when I found it in Australia, I pounced on it like a baby kitten. So what is Pommeau de Normandie? Well quite simply, it’s an alcoholic beverage which is comprised of a blend of calvados (apple brandy) and fresh apple juice - known as a mistelle. The strict ratio of one third calvados to two thirds apple juice has to produce a final alcohol content of between 16% -18% and must be barrel aged for up to 14 months. There are three AOC regions of Pommeau within Normandy and Brittany, consisting of Pommeau de Normandie, Pommeau de Bretagne and Pommeau du Maine. An amazing fact which I think is fascinating is that between 1935 and 1972 Pommeau production was illegal in France, and it was only in 1991 when AOC status was granted. Crazy!  
This Pommeau is made by Le Pere Jules from the Pays de Auge. So what did it taste like?

One simple word - heavenly.

A beautiful deep tawny colour which was luscious and thick proudly presented itself in the glass. Immediate up-front fresh cider apple aromas added beautiful spice and the soft calvados spirit warmed the nostrils. Both were in perfect harmony together. The nose was also brimming with boot polish, dusty oak, vanilla, raisins and Christmas cake. This was really beautifully complex, interesting and very unique.

A lovely charming balance again of the calvados spirit and fresh sweet apple juice was evident. The mouth feel was a touch thinner than expected, with hopes of a luscious and concentrated sweetness not found. The apple sweetness succumbed to a drying sensation from the calvados spirit leaving the back palate dry. But in saying that, it still had tonnes of palate weight presence with an oily texture and warming 17% alcohol back palate.  
This was simply a stunning beverage with tonnes of class and prestige. Being a Barossa boy who had a Great Grandfather and Grandfather who made fortified wines, I believe I know my fortified beverages. This Pommeau de Normandie definitely rates highly on my list with its complexity, but impressive freshness. Just don’t drink too much of it, or it will knock your socks off!

*Being an aperitif mistelle food pairings with things like melon, blue cheese or apple pie are recommended. It is also recommended to serve it chilled with no ice.  
Producer: Le Pere Jules
Country: France (Pays de Auge, Pommeau de Normandie)
Alcohol: 17%



1 comment:

  1. yeah, I wonder if I can find it here. Good review.