Védrenne is renowned for its liqueurs, particularly the award winning Crème de Cassis and SuperCassis. The company was founded by Joseph Védrenne and has been making liqueurs since 1923. Located in Nuits-Saint-Georges in the heart of Burgundy, it is less than 100 kilometres from Romanée Conti, a region that is traditionally known for its red fruits.
Cassis, or blackcurrant, grows to 1 metre in height and is also used in fragrances. About 30 tons of buds are sold to Grasse in Provence. Flower by Kenzo is one fragrance that uses cassis in its production.
At Védrenne , red fruit liqueurs such as cassis, framboise, fraise des bois are made by maceration. The liqueur is produced by using neutral alcohol (not brandy or Cognac) to obtain the real taste of fruit. Unlike wines, there is no fermentation in liqueurs, and as such they have a minimum of 15% alcohol to ensure there is no risk of fermentation.
Védrenne use the sugar beet root to produce sugar and alcohol, a root that is also used to make Pastis. A minimum of 5 weeks of maceration ensures the best quality. When the vat is opened, they obtain the first juice from fruit that has now a lot of colour and aroma, and is used to make Marc de Cassis. The fruit is then pressed to get the second juice. The first juice and second juice are mixed to obtain a fruit infusion which is a mix of cassis and 30% alcohol. To complete the process, dry sugar is added, mixed and the liqueur is finished.
Other liqueurs are made by the distillation process which takes place in small copper stills allowing the essence of the macerated ingredients to fully release their aromas and flavours. Sometimes a mix of maceration and distillation is used for some liqueurs.