Applejack vs Apple Brandy vs Calvados
OK. Apple Brandy is apple brandy. Calvados is French apple brandy. And Applejack is apple brandy that has been cut with a neutral spirit.
Laird's Applejack is 35% brandy, 65% neutral spirit. It has an apple flavor, but the vodka-ness is kind of strong. Leaving alcohol vapors on your palate, long after you've finished your drink.
Approximate price: $17
Laird's Apple Brandy is aged at least 7 1/2 years. It has the same apple flavor, but obviously it's a stronger flavor. It's a nice sipper, but not very complex
Approximate price: $25
Boulard Grand Solage Calvados is a blend of 3-5 year old spirits. It's interesting. There is apple flavor, along with some leather and cinnamon. I acknowledge that it's a superior product, but not one that I like. Plus, it's pricey. I have been eye-balling this for several years, and finally broke down and bought it late last year. The scary thing is, this is their low end calvados.
Cost Adjusted Grade: C
I had this on vacation in in DC last spring. It's an Old Fashioned (sugar, bitters, whiskey, water, lemon twist), made with Applejack instead of bourbon, and replacing the lemon with orange. I'll be making it with the apple brandy instead. It's a pleasant diversion, but no replacement for my evening Manhattan.