Chambord is an all-natural, velvety smooth black raspberry liqueur made in the Loire Valley, south of Paris in France that has a rich, semi-sweet, and intense berry flavor.
While it is pleasant enough to enjoy by itself, it’s better known to be the staple in many cocktails, making it a premium spirit that’s a necessity in any well-stocked drinking cabinet or bar.
The drink shares its name with the famous château de Chambord, the iconic and easily recognizable châteaux where Louis XIV often enjoyed hunting retreats and is still produced in close vicinity to the famous manor house.
Chambord: A Brief History and How It’s Made
Despite the recipe loosely hailing from the 17th Century, the Chambord brand has only been around since the 1980s.
Though, one would think otherwise looking at the bottle tributing a valiant homage to the glassware that was used at the time.
The making of this liqueur was inspired by raspberry liqueur that was made in the Loire Valley of France in the late 1600s. Legend has it that it was introduced to Louis XIV during a visit to château de Chambord.
At the time, it was a common practice for elegant meals to be accompanied by cognacs and liqueurs.
The Three-stage Creation Process
The creation of Chambord is done in three stages that the brand has baptized as “The Magnifique Process”, fitting as it really is a unique method of making liqueur.
Stage one, or “un”, is where the first infusion starts by extracting all the juices from the Valley’s blackberries, raspberries, and blackcurrants.
The juices are then mixed with the finest French spirits and left for four weeks to infuse and unlock the rich flavor. Once this occurred the berries are then ready for their second infusion.
In stage two, or “deux”, of the process, the distillers create the unmistakable flavor. After a total of six weeks and a double infusion, the berries are delicately pressed to capture all of their natural extractions which leave the rich, silky infusion base that Chambord is known for.
Stage 3, or “trois”, consists of the refinement of the liqueur. It’s in this stage where the berry infusion is blended with the flavors of all-natural black raspberries and other high-quality raspberry varietals, as well as with a combination of exquisite XO Cognac, Madagascan vanilla, Moroccan citrus peel, and delicate honey.
To round it off, the flavor is balanced to ensure the exceptional character that the liqueur is known for.
The liqueur is made using only natural ingredients and does not comprise of any artificial flavorings. This shines through in the taste that even though it has a vibrant color with fruity ingredients, it is not overly sweet, and the vanilla and citrus peel taste is present.
It has a velvety mouthfeel that makes it even more delicious.
Chambord Prices, Variations, and Sizes
As far as variations go in the liqueur itself, you will find none. It’s clear that the brand is happy to stick to what they know, and what they know is a black raspberry liqueur. The only variation there when it comes to the Chambord liqueur, are the different sizes.
Generally, Chambord is easily and readily available in two size variations that are 375ml, and 750ml.
It is also available in 500ml on rarer occasions as well but is not as easily attainable and, remarkably, costs more than the bigger size of 750ml.
|Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur||375 ml||from $19,99 to $21,99|
|Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur||500 ml||from $42|
|Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur||750 ml||from $28,99 to $34,99|
While Chambord is arguably the most exquisite raspberry liqueur on the market, it’s not the only one out there. There are many alternative options to consider, should the French infusion not be for you, whether it’s the taste or the price.
Here is a list of liqueurs that you can use to substitute Chambord:
Razzmatazz is a raspberry liqueur that makes a great substitute for Chambord. The tastes are similar and once mixed into cocktails, it’s not easy to tell the difference.
The alcohol content is the same but Razzmatazz comes in much easier on the pocket. A 1-liter bottle will set you back around $11. That is a big difference in price and quantity, so the quality might be open for interpretation.
Di Amore Raspberry
Di Amore Raspberry is an Italian liqueur that tastes distinctly sweet, black raspberries. Once again, it’s a considerably cheaper option over Chambord, but tastes a lot like it barring the strong vanilla hint and is not quite as smooth.
It may be a bit of a challenge to find a bottle, but when you do, you can expect to pay around $11,99 to $14,99 for a 750ml bottle.
Giffard Crème de Mure Blackberry Liqueur
Also from France, Giffard Blackberry Premium Liqueur is a premium replacement for Chambord. This brilliant ruby drink makes a great replacement for when Chambord is unattainable and without skimping on any quality.
The Giffard Blackberry Liqueur is made using a special variety of blackberries that are gentle and aromatic, and continue to develop flavor after being macerated in alcohol.
The Creme de Mure smells of fresh blackberry compote and tastes of bright red fruit, mellowing to honeyed dark berries on the finish.
You can expect to pay in the same region as you would for Chambord.
How to Drink Chambord
As mentioned before, Chambord can be enjoyed on its own as a nightcap or an after-dinner digestif.
Having Chambord as a standalone is a lovely experience and makes a quick low-proof drink. It’s best in a chilled glass or on the rocks, though a splash of cold seltzer or sparkling wine is also a great addition.
However, it is renowned for its versatility in a number of cocktails.
Ranging from simple to complex, the versatility of Chambord shines through in the many cocktail recipes that include Chambord. Here are just a few that you can try out for yourself, or order on your next night out:
- The Chambord French Martini is a popular go-to cocktail in any setting for all the right reasons. Fusing vodka and pineapple juice, it’s a simple, yet delightful, drink whether you like it shaken or stirred.
- If you like to add a bit of natural flavoring to your drinks, the Blackberry Thyme Cocktail is for you. Mixing Chambord, thyme, and whiskey, this cocktail makes for an interesting combo and packs a potent punch.
- The Mocha-Berry cocktail blends Chambord, coffee, and cocoa powder for a hot raspberry mocha coffee drink that tastes as good as it sounds. This one is best suited for evenings with friends or family around the fireplace.
These are just three of our favorites, but you can click here if you’re looking for more Chambord cocktail recipes.
FAQs About Chambord
What is Chambord?
Chambord is a French black raspberry liqueur with a cognac base. It is considered a premium spirit that is enjoyed worldwide.
What is Chambord made from?
Chambord is a premium black raspberry liqueur that is made in the Loire Valley of France. It is crafted with 100% natural ingredients, which include blackberries, raspberries, and blackcurrant.
Where to buy Chambord?
Chambord is readily available at most liquor stores and can also be purchased at various places online for delivery.
Can you drink Chambord liqueur straight?
While you can enjoy a glass of Chambord slightly chilled or over ice on its own, it is renowned for being used in a number of cocktails.
How strong is Chambord?
Chambord has an alcoholic content of 16.5% ABV.
How long does Chambord Liqueur last after opening?
If unopened and properly sealed, Chambord will last indefinitely. If opened, it is best to consume Chambord within 12 months, and ideally within 6-8 months for best quality.
What does Chambord go well with?
Chambord is at its best in cocktails. You can simply mix it in with champagne or a good dry gin, or vodka or rum.
Can you drink Chambord over ice?
Yes, Chambord can be drunk by itself or over ice.