Les fruits ont une âme

Crafting cordials and creme liqueurs

Crafting cordials and creme liqueursCassis
Unlike brandies, liqueurs have added sugar content that varies depending on the product.
Liqueurs are therefore base spirits plus raw flavourings (usually botanical infusions) that have been sweetened with added sugar.

Two methods are used to make cordials and creme liqueurs:



 Distillation: The spirit is distilled with flavourings (fruit, grain or botanicals) in an alambic still. The distilled mash is separated from the alcohol and is then sweetened with sugar. Distillation provides an exceptionally aromatic extract. 



Maceration: In this case fruit or botanicals are soaked in neutral alcohol.

This mixture is called an INFUSION of fruit; the aromatic extract is the result of soaking (macerating-infusing) fruit in alcohol to draw out the flavours. This method requires fresh fruit for the maceration process. Sugar is added at the end and only the master distiller knows the secret measures required which vary depending on the variety and quantity of fruit used. Getting the levels exactly right is fundamental for the quality of the final product.

Some people explore mixing different methods and it is possible to get good quality liqueurs from macerated and distilled fruit but this process is primarily the preserve of experts in the know.



What is the difference between a liqueur and a creme liqueur?

The only difference is sugar content:

Liqueurs usually have a sugar content of at least 100g of sugar per litre of alcohol.

Creme liqueurs usually have at least 250g sugar per litre of alcohol which is why creme liqueurs are largely added to white wine, sparkling wine and champagne (e.g. Kir ).