Crème de cassis forever paired with white wine to make a kir, this blackcurrant liqueur has conquered France, and many other countries, since the 19th century. Despite the passage of time, the manufacturing process of this fruit liqueur has largely remained the same. Blackcurrant berries are macerated in alcohol, and then the precious juice is extracted, and sugar is added. Two P.G.I.s, however, set some rules to obtain the designation of Crème de Cassis de Dijon and Crème de Cassis de Bourgogne. Choose your favorite!
What you need to know
Descendant of the ratafias, blackcurrant liqueur had no difficulty making it onto the tables in France. Quite the contrary. Created in 1841, it quickly became very popular in cafés. In fact, it was a café waiter who invented the famous "blanc-cass'" later adopted by the deputy mayor of Dijon, one Félix... Kir, who would popularize it under his own name. Since then, two P.G.I.s have been created, in 2013 and 2015, for Crème de Cassis de Dijon and Crème de Cassis de Bourgogne, respectively. The two liqueurs have a very similar manufacturing process. Both include the cold maceration of berries in alcohol before transferring and adding sugar to create a liqueur of at least 15% alcohol. To get into more detail, Crème de Cassis de Bourgogne differs from Crème de Cassis de Dijon due to its larger designation area, a shorter maceration period (3 weeks) and a higher minimum sugar content (450g/l) as well as fruit content (250g/l). From this point of view, the Noir de Bourgogne blackcurrant variety is favored by liqueur makers and their customers. The more customers there are, the more the product is sought after..
Very rich in sugar, Crème de Cassis retains some of the vitamins and antioxidant powers of the fruit. It should nevertheless be consumed in moderation.
How to use
Months, even years, in a cool, dry place, away from heat and light.
With a pan-fried duck breast, pears in syrup, roasted figs... and, of course, a Bourgogne Aligoté or a Crémant de Bourgogne in a kir.