Calvados often nicknamed Calva, is a brandy from Normandy in France, obtained from apples or, sometimes, from apples with pears.

Apple orchards and brewers are mentioned as far back as the 8th century by Charlemagne. The first record of Norman distillation was made by squire Gilles de Gouberville in 1553. After 50 years later in 1606, the guild for cider distillation was born.

In the 17th century, the traditional cider farms expanded, but the prohibition of cider brandies was enforced elsewhere than Brittany, Maine, and Normandy.

In the 19th century, output grew with industrial distillation and the working class fashion for café-calva. When a phylloxera outbreak in the last quarter of the 19th century destroyed the vineyards of France and Europe, calvados experienced a "golden age". During World War I, cider brandy was requisitioned to make explosives for the armament industry due to its alcohol content.

Cider brandy is also made in the UK and appears in records going back to 1678. Somerset cider brandy gained European protected geographical indication (PGI) status in 2011.

Calvados is also great with

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The Diki-Diki is a cocktail drink with calvados, Swedish Punsch, and grapefruit juice. It first appeared in the 1920s when it was popular in London's higher-end American Bars. Nowadays is more commonly served as a Tiki drink. The initial recipe calls for shaking the ingredients with ice in 2:1:1 proportions. Over time later variations have modified the ratio to greater highlight the calvados as the base ingredient (4:1:1). The Diki-Diki is presently served primarily in Tiki bars. A tiki bar is a themed drinking place that serves decorated cocktails, especially rum-based mixed drinks such as Mai Tai and Zombie cocktails.

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Angel Face

Cocktails come in all shapes, sizes, and styles, but most include one base spirit accented by other ingredients. That is the case with Angel's Face recipe, an original cocktail from Brooklyn bartender Jay Zimmerman that mixes gin and applejack, plus apricot liqueur. The story of the Angel Face cocktail began in 1930 when Harry Craddock published its splendid collection of recipes: the Savoy Cocktail Book. The main source of inspiration for this drink is the notorious gangster of the American Prohibition (Angel Face). Others state that the cocktail is dedicated to Rick Blaine, the legendary star of Casablanca, starring Humphrey Bogart, considered that the film came out in 1942. Gin is a traditional base ingredient that seldom joins forces with applejack. Applejack is a kind of apple brandy that dates back to the late 1600s when the American colonists turned their apple harvests into hard cider, discovering they had something a lot stronger. They increased the cider's alcohol content by leaving barrels outside overnight to freeze resulting in a high-proof spirit they dubbed "applejack." The Angel Face is a cocktail made from gin, apricot brandy, and Calvados in equal amounts.