Review: Blue Angel Vodka

Review: Blue Angel Vodka

blue-angel-vodkaThis new California vodka is distilled from (unspecified) American grains and distilled four times, and distiller (and inventor — he also created a battery-powered sticky note dispenser) Maurice Kanbar says he goes to great lengths to filter out hangover-causing congeners. Blue Angel, he says, contains less than 0.01 grams of congeners or fusel oils per liter of vodka, so for those obsessed with avoiding hangovers, well, this might just be the right stuff.

I wish I had more to report about the taste of the spirit, however. Very traditional in structure, it’s got loads of medicinal overtones. Ice (and a little meltwater) helps, but not much. Blue Angel may not give you a hangover, but I find it too rough around the edges to drink enough of to find out for sure.

Those who enjoy classic, old-school vodkas may get a kick out of the practically retro flavor of Blue Angel. Those wanting a base for their froufrou girl drink won’t be fans.

80 proof.

B- / $28 /

Blue Angel Vodka




Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.


  1. Leonora on May 15, 2009 at 5:30 am

    What an ugly bottle. Kanbar, when I knew of him, was always jealous of Sidney Franks and Grey Goose (he called it “Gay Goose” which just shows how petty he is) and this looks like a poor imitation. Whilst SKYY has been a great success, everything Kanbar has done since has been wacky to borderline insane. First there was that stupid cola drink, then the poison headache inducing Vermeer and then those stupid Zip Note machines. This bottle looks like something from 1970 and it should have been left there. Maurice – grow old gracefully and realise you’ll never beat Grey Goose.

  2. Bill Jones on May 16, 2009 at 1:29 am

    I have to agree with your review. Tried Blue Angel and it ain’t real vodka. I much prefer the Russian stuff.

    As regards Leonora’s comments, it seems the man behind this just flits from one thing to the next so somehow I doubt it will be around for too long.

  3. Mandy Dawes on June 10, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    I met Kanbar years ago. He’s quite a bizarre one! He is impatient, he lacks manners and he isn’t exactly the kindest man around. He is known for his temper and it’s hardly angelic. If this vodka is nearly as bland as SKYY, this for sure doesn’t deserve an ounce of success

  4. Elmer on October 28, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    All Billionaire are eccentric! Personally I’ve enjoyed several events with Blue Angel Vodka as sponsors and have always had positive feedback from myself and my friends

  5. Mandy Dawes on November 19, 2009 at 4:15 am

    Elmer – Kanbar is not “eccentric”. He’s simply in one word – AWFUL. His vodka is pretty awful too.

  6. Helen Muirhead on December 12, 2009 at 4:02 am

    What awful vodka. Got a terrible headache from drinking it. Nearly as bad as his disgusting SKYY vodka. Love the comments here. Never met Kanbar but certainly wouldn’t want to after reading this.

  7. Bryce Thomas on February 23, 2010 at 12:26 am

    Why doesn’t everybody commenting here try doing something entrepreneurial themselves. Even when he’s pushing 80, he’s taking the risk and trying new things… something all of you will probably never do…

    And before I would dare open my trap, Mandy, about Mr. Kanbar not being “angelic,” I would do my research and discover the countless philanthropic endeavors he’s pursued over his years… from cataract removers to new/revolutionizing syringes (which ALL of you have been injected with), don’t worry about the man being anything sub-par to angelic… oh, and why don’t you take a visit to the Kanbar Cardiac Center in San Fran and find out for yourself?

  8. Paige on March 3, 2010 at 11:40 am

    Wow. I thought this was a site about drinks, not character assassination. I just noticed there are two asses in assassination! How appropriate. If you don’t like Blue Angel, don’t drink it. And if you are a perfect human being, congrats. I certainly have a long way to go, but I know better than to judge people I don’t know.

  9. Sarah on July 18, 2010 at 10:50 am

    Kanbar is AWFUL. He may well have given a few million to charity but that is probably his way of making up for all the people he’s screwed over (eg Henry Kaufman, his former business partner who beat him in court) and his terrible temper. As regards Blue Angel, I’m definitely boycotting it.

  10. Mik on December 3, 2010 at 10:53 pm

    wow, I’m really in the minority here…I love this stuff and keep going back to my local shop for more. I find it to be very enjoyable and on par with Gray Goose.

    • mab on January 21, 2022 at 9:24 am

      I feel the same couldn’t find it for awhile thought they stop making its one of my favorites

  11. Peter Farmiloe on December 16, 2010 at 8:48 am

    Mik, you are a minority on this product. I love vodkas and much prefer such ones as Marquis Vodka, Sipsmith, Vodka O and Belvedere. They ARE real vodkas. This is a joke.

  12. James on December 16, 2010 at 12:10 pm

    We’re getting the same exact character-assassinating posts over on my review of Blue Angel. I’ve deleted them since they have nothing to do with the vodka, but wonder whom is to blame – an ex-lover? a former worker? I think that it’s all the same person but have no clue.

  13. Anonymous on December 26, 2010 at 2:52 pm

    Sitting here having a Blue Angel Martini and enjoying it very much !

  14. Anonymous on April 26, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Hal –
    I carry Blue Angel vodka at the Waterfront Restaurant and have had everyone try it to get their opinions. So far everyone loves it and I have turned an Absolut and Ketal One lover into staying with Blue Angel now. I’ve just recently put it on my shelf for about a month and a half now and have gone through atleast seven bottles already. I put it above everything on my vodka shelf and its moving fast right along side Grey Goose. Great job Maurice!

  15. jen on July 1, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    There’s definitely some scorned lovers on this sight.

  16. Melvin Gordon on December 13, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    Blue Angel Vodka is very harsh to the taste. Does require cultivating a taste. Personally, I prefer Grey Goose. I will give Bue Angel a much fairer evaluation because I received a bottle as a Christmas gift. I think that no product should be touted because it originates from California. California is not the end all to be all…

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