Review: Graton Distilling D. George Benham’s Vodka Vodka

We were big fans of Sonoma-distilled D. George Benham’s gin, so it made natural sense to take a spin with its vodka. The title above isn’t a typo: This is “Vodka Vodka,” or “vodka-flavored vodka,” in the parlance of Graton Distilling, a nod to the purported purity of the spirit. That moniker didn’t pass legal muster, though, so “Vodka Vodka” it was.

This is a curious vodka, with four individual distillates of grapes, organic white wheat, rye wheat, and red cracked wheat all blended together, proofed, and filtered through charcoal. The nose is simple but pleasant, lightly dusty with charcoal notes and hints of grain but otherwise it’s quite neutral.

On the palate, you can see why they wanted to call it “vodka-flavored vodka.” Quite neutral and flavorless at the start, it nods to old world vodkas with a light medicinality, before slowly passing through a gentle vegetal note, finally settling on a lightly lemon-sweet finish. Easygoing to a fault, its round and lightly creamy body is probably better designed for mixing rather than sipping straight, where a sharper spirit works better, but all told it’s a versatile spirit that will work for just about anything, in a pinch.

80 proof.

B+ / $28 / gratondistilling.com

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