While France is deservedly famous for its iconic Cognac, this certainly isn’t where the brilliance and creativity ends. The country is the birthplace for some of the highest quality and unique spirits and liqueurs. Some such as Calvados, are very well known—but others are almost secret delights that only those in the know get to enjoy. Until now.

Discover bonjourdrinks.com here.

This is the raison d’être behind Bonjour Drinks—a trusted resource where the very best of these offerings can be accessed in a single location. But far more than that, each of the distinguished brands that makes the grade has been personally assessed by our experienced team.

We, Sophie and Max, both keen on expanding the vision of Cognac Expert throughout all of France, sent Taylor to taste through each region, sampling local spirits. And the result? A top-end selection of premium French spirits and liqueurs that represent the whole geographical area of the country.

In 2009 we, brother and sister Max and Sophie von Olfers, based in Poullignac, France at the family estate called the Logis de Beaulieu, started Cognac Expert as a blog to draw attention to the incredible work being done by the region’s 3500+ grower-distillers.

Since then, Cognac Expert has evolved and grown as a business, with activities in e-commerce, media content development, Cognac Expert Original production, and B2B. That all being said, the DNA of Cognac Expert remains very much the same: explain, educate, promote, and sell small-production authentic Cognac. But we are farmers ourselves. As we would travel through France’s different regions, meeting many people and tasting many fantastic drinks along the way, the pull became too strong to limit ourselves to the Cognac. For this reason, Bonjour Drinks saw the light of day.

The very best make it into our Bonjour Drinks Selection—a hand-picked, curated range of premium French spirits and liqueurs that we all agreed were truly outstanding. Interestingly, while some of these artisan producers concentrate on a single product, others have extended to create a wider repertoire. Where relevant, we tasted these as well, and the best made it onto the larger collection found in the Bonjour Drinks Catalog.

What Makes a Bonjour Drinks Selection?

While there were many very good drinks that we sampled on our tasting “Tour de France”, there had to be specific criteria that meant a creation made it to the top list.

While it can be complex to define why a taste sensation truly hits the spot, we’ve whittled it down to the following:

The producer: Are their distillation methods and ingredients typical of the region? Are there links to the area’s history, culture, cuisine, climate, economy, etc.? What about their longevity—is the producer and their ancestors woven into the very fabric of the area? What’s their vision, both for the taste of their drinks today and for the future?

Uniqueness: As well as being of the highest quality, the drink must be one of a kind. Does it make us smile? Does it surprise? Is it versatile?

The nose and palate: Of course, the drink has to be a delight to smell and taste. It must have that special something that made us say, “yes”, this one makes the grade.

Our Bonjour Drinks selection map
The map of France including all the regions of our first Bonjour Drinks selection

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The Bonjour Drinks Selection: delight your taste buds with a liquid gastronomy tour of La Belle France

After much tasting, re-tasting, and evaluation, we eventually settled on the products that made it onto the Bonjour Drinks Selection. There are 18 in total, which may seem a lot at first glance. However, such is the quality of our country’s artisanal drink creators, each of them is well deserving of their entry.

Read on to discover the local delicacies that showcase the vibrant—and sometimes eclectic—mix of craft liquor that represents the very best of France. Some regions are known across the globe, others are locations that only those with an intimate knowledge of our huge country will have heard of. 

But they all have the following in common: local production, incredible expertise, unique ingredients, and a taste that’ll have you rushing back to imbibe again. We hope you enjoy the Bonjour Drinks Selection as much as we do.

A25

Who makes it? Aurian

What is it? Armagnac

Where does it come from? Armagnac

Why is it a must have? Over-proof, rustic, and quite simply a wonderful Armagnac that’s little known outside of France.

Discover Aurian A25 Armagnac.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Sunday Brunch

Who makes it? Aurian

What is it? Eau-de-vie du Vin

Where does it come from? Armagnac

Why is it a must have? If sunshine had a taste, then this would be it! Armagnac benefits from some of the longest, sunniest days in all of France—and it shows.

Discover Aurian Sunday Brunch.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Tourbé

Who makes it? Rozelieures

What is it? French whisky

Where does it come from? Lorraine

Why is it a must have? Because it’s whisky—and it’s French! A peaty, single malt delight that impressed us all with its smoothness and multi-faceted character.

Discover Tourbé Whisky.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Réserve de Familie Poire Williams

Who makes it? Lehmann

What is it? An eau-de-vie distilled from pears

Where does it come from? Alsace

Why is it a must have? Orchard sweetness captured in a bottle—simply delicious.

Discover Lehmann Réserve de Famille Poire.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Calvados Pay d’Auge 40 Years

Who makes it? Le Pere Jules

What is it? Apple brandy, known as Calvados

Where does it come from? Calvados, Normandy

Why is it a must have? A powerful, oaky, spicy character that’s distinctly different from the other brandies produced in France and around the world.

Discover the 40 Years Old Calvados.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

La Vieille Poire

Who makes it? Rene de Miscault

What is it? Pear brandy

Where does it come from? Alsace

Why is it a must have? The fragrance has to be experienced to be believed. The nose is an experience all on its own, and tasting the amber nectar only enhances its effect on your senses.

Discover Rene de Miscault’s pear Brandy.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Libertine 55% Originale

Who makes it? Rene de Miscault

What is it? Absinthe

Where does it come from? Alsace

Why is it a must have? Absinthe is a lesser-owned spirit that brings to mind the brilliance of Oscar Wilde and other literary geniuses. If you fancy sipping a drink that’s colloquially known as the “Green Fairy”, then Rene de Miscault’s quality version could be described as “muse in a bottle”. 

Discover the 55% Absinthe.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Banyuls Vin de Méditation

Who makes it? La Tour Vieille

What is it? Known as a vin doux naturalle, the wine is created using a local maturing method whereby new wines are added to older ones in the barrel. This is done very slowly and over many years, allowing them to “educate” their young exuberance. 

Where does it come from? Roussillon

Why is it a must have? A wonderfully mature, highly refined taste that boasts incredible rancio.

Discover this unique bottle.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Gin d’Avril

Who makes it? Distillerie du Petit Grain

What is it? A gin that combines the fresh taste of local herbs with the classic notes of juniper berries

Where does it come from? Languedoc

Why is it a must have? The unique blend of botanicals and herbs embodies the season where Mother Nature burst back into life. Truly a taste of a Languedoc Spring in a glass.

Discover the Gin d’Avril.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Marc de Bourgogne

Who makes it? Domaine La Croix Montjoie

What is it? Marc de Bourgogne

Where does it come from? Bourgogne

Why is it a must have? A robust, unique taste that comes from grapes that are grown and cultivated to make the most of harsh winters and warmer summer temperatures.

Discover this Marc de Bourgogne.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Eau-de-Vie Grande Réserve Mirabelle

Who makes it? Distillerie Meyer

What is it? Mirabelle plum brandy

Where does it come from? Alsace

Why is it a must have? A fresh taste with a unique vibrancy and depth. Perfect for those hot summer days over ice with a splash of your fav mixer.

Discover this Mirabelle brandy.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Genepi Berger

Who makes it? Distillerie de Aravis

What is it? Liqueur made from genepi and other alpine plants of the region

Where does it come from? Savoie

Why is it a must have? Close your eyes and inhale the alpine notes, that include angelica root and mint, and you’re instantly transported to a mountain hideaway.

Discover the Genepi Liqueur.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Eau-de-Vie Fraise d’Alsace Exceptionnelle

Who makes it? Distillerie Windholtz

What is it? Strawberry eau-de-vie (from fermentation)

Where does it come from? Alsace

Why is it a must have? A delicious strawberries-and-cream liquor with a truly unique character. Once tasted it’s sure to become a versatile cabinet staple—and certainly a talking point when shared in great company.

Discover this unique Strawberry Eau-de-vie.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Pink Pastaga

Who makes it? Straw Bale Distillery

What is it? Pastis

Where does it come from? Southwest

Why is it a must have? Pastis is undoubtedly France’s archetypal aperitif drink. We love its cooling easy going vibes that hint back to summer, sun and good times. And this is as natural a presentation of Pastis as one can find!

Discover the Pink Pastaga Pastis.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

St Wendelin Le Principal

Who makes it? Distillerie Bertrand

What is it? Whisky

Where does it come from? Alsace

Why is it a must have? A whisky created on the back of a fascinating legend that pays homage to the patron saint of the village. Pure, non-chill filtered bliss that’s only bottled once a year on St Wendelin’s Day.

Discover Bertrand’s Whisky.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

108 Plantes

Who makes it? Vert de Coeur

What is it? Chartreuse

Where does it come from? Auvergne

Why is it a must have? The vibrant blue color hints at the pleasures ahead. Discover the brilliance of distillation that combines French savoir-faire with 108 plants from all four corners of our planet.

Discover the 108 plants Chartreuse.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Le Vent

Who makes it? Larmes de Levant

What is it? Sake

Where does it come from? Auvergne-Rhône Alpes

Why is it a must have? French Sake! Who knew there was such a thing? And it’s really really good. Nutty undertones, soft white fleshed fruit and a truly subtle structure make it a true alternative to its Japanese competitors.

Discover the French Sake.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits

Liqueur de Tomates

Who makes it? Distillerie Artisanale Cazottes

What is it? Liqueur

Where does it come from? Southwest

Why is it a must have? 160 varieties of tomatoes go into this deliciously refreshing liqueur. A little sip of Gaelic sunshine.

Discover the Tomatoes Liquor.

Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits
Bonjour Drinks: home of the finest French spirits
Discover our first Bonjour Drinks selection on bonjourdrinks.com

The World of French Drinks Delivered to Your Door

Much as Cognac is and will always be where our heart lies, there are times when even die hard aficionados like us yearn for a different taste experience. We love the creativity and talents found in the huge variety of French artisan production—and the ability to showcase these delights to our worldwide “family” is a real privilege.

Head over to Bonjour Drinks to begin your journey, discover French Premium Spirits and perhaps explore a bottle or two. A whole new world of taste experience awaits—so dive right in and say bonjour!

Go discover bonjourdrinks.com.


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Max is a spirits expert and speaker, into marketing, technology, startups, and business development. He’s also a farmer. He likes tools and machines, Game of Thrones, and Better Call Saul. Included in his Top 10 Cognacs are the Audry XO and Bache Gabrielsen 1973. Max founded Cognac Expert in 2010 at his family’s estate in Poullignac, in the Cognac region, France. Starting as a blog, today Cognac Expert is the world’s largest website about all things Cognac, a blog, and a specialized online shop featuring 1000+ different Cognac bottles.

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