Calvados is an apple brandy from the French region of Lower Normandy (Basse-Normandie). Calvados is distilled from cider made from specially grown and selected apples, from over 200 named varieties. It is not uncommon for a calvados producer to use over 100 specific varieties of apples, which are either sweet (such as the 'Rouge Duret' variety), tart (such as the 'Rambault' variety), or bitter (such as the 'Mettais', 'Saint Martin', 'Frequin', and 'Binet Rouge' varieties), the latter being inedible.
The fruit is harvested (either by hand or mechanically) and pressed into a juice that is fermented into a dry cider. It is then distilled into eau de vie. After two years of aging in oak casks, it can be sold as Calvados. The longer it is aged, the smoother the drink becomes. Usually, the maturation goes on for several years.