Christian Drouin VSOP:
The nose has notes of apple and citrus but it's also quite sour with a note of white vinegar.
The palate is fairly dry, with notes of apple, cinnamon and oak, but again sour with a note of white vinegar.
The finish is bitter, hot and spicy. Verdict: to paraphrase Douglas Adams: almost totally unlike calvados.
Pierre Huet Vielle Réserve 8 y.o.:
Candied apples, pears and caramelized sugar on the nose.
The palate is quite light and a bit thin, with notes of apple sauce and citrus. Sweet but drying and develops oak.
Disapponting finish with notes of oak and cardboard. Not bad but a bit bland.
Père Magloire Fine:
Fragrant, fresh and fruity nose with notes of apple and ginger, also oak and cardboard. Nice yet slightly spirity.
The palate is rather nice and light. At first fruity with apple, citrus and vanilla, then drying. Develops oak and spices
and grows quite hot. The finish is hot, dominated by oak and spices. Also a little earthy. All in all not bad, but uneven.
Domaine Dupont Vielle Réserve 5 y.o.:
Fragrant, fruity nose with apple, citrus, oak and custard. Rather nice. The palate is light, fresh and
sweet at first, then turns fairly hot and spicy. The finish is quite oaky and spicy. Simplistic yet nice.
All in all it's not quite balanced but still a nice apéritif.
La Ribaude Hors d'Age 8 y.o.:
Rather nice nose with mint, cinnamon, apple, pear and a note of citrus. Unfortunately also a disturbing earthy note.
The palate is smooth with fresh fruity notes of apple and citrus, also oak. Sweet at first then drying. Very nice!
The finish is oaky and warming with notes of gingerbread and orange.
Summary: the nose has a slight off-note but otherwise it's smooth and balanced.
Le Père Jules:
The nose has candied apples, caramelized sugar, oak and fresh notes of citrus, cinnamon and peppermint.
Nice but a little unusual. The palate is sweet and fairly rich yet smooth and balanced. Develops notes of mint
and vanilla. Nice! The finish is oaky and spicy yet very nice, with notes of vanilla, gingerbread and apple pie.
Verdict: it's a little funny on the nose, but otherwise balanced and very nice.
Roger Groult 8 y.o.:
Very nice, fragrant nose with oak, spices, gingerbread, cinnamon, apple pie and peppermint. Also a surprising note
of pickles. The palate is fairly rich yet smooth. At first sweet with orange marmalade then drying and develops notes
of oak, gingerbread, lemon and peppermint. The finish is oaky and fairly dry, spicy and fiery (nice, though).
All in all it's complex and well aged. It's a little heavy on the oak but a very nice digestif.