As our dedicated readers know, vodka is having something of a resurgence in recent years. The once stalwart spirit of czar’s and celeb’s alike had some dark days in the post-aughts, devolving into a flood of flavored options that were just a poor excuse to indulge America’s sweet tooth.
But no more.
There is an absolutely fascinating range of vodka expressions out there, even within the category of non-flavored ones. Depending upon who you ask, the myriad depth of flavors can be attributed to everything from the grain (or fruit, honey, even milk, in some cases) from which the spirit is distilled, the method of distillation, the filtering process, the water used to cut the alcohol back to a standard 80 proof, and more. Everyone has an opinion, and they all may be right.
Here are some of our favorite vodkas out there right now.
1. Prairie Organic Vodka
This bright vodka begins as organic corn from Minnesota, and is indicative of the direction that vodka seems to be heading in these days, with its focus on a more specific place of origin and the company’s respect for sustainability (the leftover grains are used for animal feed, for example). The spirit itself is excellent, its aromas of cucumber and honeydew preceding sneakily sweet flavors reminiscent of Halloween candy corn, caramel, and chocolate pastry creme. There are also flashes of pear and spice. SRP: $19.99
2. Van Gogh Vodka
Crafted from a blend of premium wheat from Holland, Germany and France, creating a sophisticated and textured spirit with unique nuances from each region. With subtle flavors of European grain laced with mineral undertones, it is a clean and refined vodka perfect for any cocktail creation.
3. Our/Vodka New York
Using the most local ingredients possible (it is Manhattan after all) they source the finest quality and most locally available rectified spirit (corn) and blend it with highly-purified and demineralized New York City water and a grain distillate that has been fermented with a proprietary yeast that we redistill and purify in their small-batch alembic copper still system in their Chelsea distillery, giving Our/NewYork it’s unique flavor and identity.
4. Hangar One Fog Point Vodka
To create Fog Point, Hangar One installed their very own fog catchers to turn fog into fresh water. This water is then blended with vodka crafted solely from the distilled wine of California’s Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc + Viognier. This – quite frankly – revolutionary experiment yields an extraordinarily crisp, pure, and gluten free sipping vodka with elegant hints of pear, citrus, and honeysuckle.