Working the Calvados
The longer I remain in the booze business, the more I come to value the close relationships I've formed over the years and appreciate the people who are an absolute pleasure to work with. Astrid Hubert is one of those people and we've sold so much of her Pays d'Auge Vieux expression at this point that we're by far her largest client (thousands upon thousands of bottles out the door). Few things in life at this point make me as happy as finding success with people I adore and respect. Astrid is like a burst of bubbly energy that never quits. She's constantly smiling, making funny faces, telling self-effacing jokes, and reminding me of how much I like her. She's also tough as hell, one of the few woman I've seen running an entire estate in Normandy from harvest to distillation. We hung out with her for over an hour today, working on potential new products while getting an advance tasting of our newest batch of the Vieux. This upcoming edition (due to land at the end of the month) is based primarily on the 2008 vintage with bits of 2006 and 2010 blended in. It's textbook Astrid—friendly, feminine, but with a bit of a spicy kick. I'll have the whole day's events up at On the Trail shortly.