French regions: a treasure trove of liqueur talent08-06-2018
There are literally dozens of liqueurs in France, each one a reflection of its native region’s unique and typical character well worth promoting.
When French liqueurs are trending
It would be fair to say that every Frenchman or woman has a French liqueur of choice to call their own, depending on where they were born or grew up, their favourite tipple in their local bar, or quite simply gleaned from a show-stopping cocktail , the memory and taste of which still lingers over the years. Exploring the four corners of France is not only the best way to discover its culinary richesse, but also an opportunity to sample exquisite French liqueurs appreciated by mixologists around the globe. Now is the time to make sure these unsung heros of the cocktail world receive the recognition they deserve; and there’s plenty to say on the subject.
Cambusier places French liqueurs firmly in the spotlight
Cambusier, is a relatively young company set up in June 2017, and the brainchild of three bright young things from Lorraine in Eastern France: Martin Smodis, his sister Sidonie and friend Theo. Having successfully secured backing through crowdfunding, the three founders were able to embark upon their dream to adapt French liqueurs to contemporary tastes. “We noted that France has many premium quality liqueurs which are not necessarily seeing the visibility they deserve,” launched Martin Smodis, CEO Cambusier, who can barely contain his penchant for liqueur de Mirabelle, a plum-based speciality liqueur from his native Lorraine.
A simple premise: a region, a liqueur, a producer
From this simple concept, the idea to promote alcoholic liqueurs from each region of France was born. Today, there is already a list of 12 French liqueurs (see below), pending the arrival of the lucky 13th from Ile-de-France, the greater Paris region, already in the pipeline, with a simple, yet serious approach. “We knew we had to completely update the packaging, identify the finest artisan producers, work only with 100% natural ingredients and resonate with current trends, ie. cocktails,” he explains. The concept is very straightforward: a region, a liqueur, and a producer, and the approach seems on the right track, since Cambusier has already attracted sufficient financial backing to allow the start-up to look further afield to export markets. “We have prospected several markets including Asia, (Taiwan and Hong Kong), and the United States, and if everything goes according to plan, we hope to be present on these markets within the next three months,” states the Lorraine entrepreneur, whose liqueur de Mirabelle has already seen success at a mixology competition in Miami. “Bartenders really enjoyed working with this product – it was a great find.” Today, Cambusier liqueurs are available in wine-merchants, fine grocery shops and cocktail bars across France, and also at Galeries Lafayette, Paris. The brand is increasingly present in the on-trade sector, where demand is strong and the products are generally well-received.
On the liqueur list:
Liqueur de mirabelle (from Grand Est, Eastern France), Crème de Cassis (Bourgogne – Franche Comté), liqueur de citron de Menton (made with Menton lemons, Provence-Apes-Cote d’Azur), liqueur de coing (quince liqueur from Pays de la Loire), liqueur de myrte (made from the myrtle plant from Corsica), liqueur de framboise (raspberry liqueur from Centre Val de Loire), liqueur de Génépi (liqueur made from Genepi alpine flowers from Auvergne – Rhône-Alpes), liqueur de prunelle (liqueur from sloeberries in Aquitaine), liqueur de fraise de Plougastel (a liqueur made with Plougastel strawberries in Brittany), liqueur de pomme (apple-based liqueur from Normandy), liqueur de violette (made from violets, in Occitanie, southern France) and liqueur de Genièvre (liqueur made from juniper berries, from Hauts de France, around Picardy and Calais) .
Try this liqueur de Mirabelle cocktail!
L’abus d’alcool est dangereux pour la santé, consommez avec modération.