Review: Odessa Brandy VSOP

Review: Odessa Brandy VSOP

The former Soviet block does such wonders with vodka that I had perhaps overly inflated hopes for Odessa brandy, which is made in the Ukraine and carries a VSOP designation.

The producer offers some details:

Odessa is produced from spirits distilled from white grape varietals including Rkatsiteli, Aligoté and Pinot varieties. The Rkatsiteli is an ancient pale-skinned grape variety from the Republic of Georgia – one of the oldest (if not the oldest) wine-producing regions on earth. Aligoté is a white grape used to make dry white wines in the Burgundy region of France, but it is also cultivated in many Eastern Europe countries.

Odessa is distilled using the traditional French “Charentais” – or double fractional distillation – in copper pot stills.  The heart of the distillate is then carefully selected to be bottled and aged, enhancing the delicate and refined aroma that is the signature of its white grape varietals.  The spirit then ages in oak barrels for at least five years.

The bad news is that none of that really matters. It’s hard to put it delicately, but Odessa is tough to choke down.

The nose is equal parts new wood and old Butterfingers. There’s a playful eastern spice note that gives one hope, but it really can’t hold up against the bolder and less enthralling notes underlying the brandy. The palate is rough and tumble, highly astringent with notes of cleaning fluid atop butterscotch and heavy pours of maple syrup. Those eastern spice notes don’t make an appearance here, leaving you to ponder a finish of melted gummy bears mingling with sawdust.

80 proof.

D+ / $10

Odessa Brandy VSOP

$10
3

Rating

3.0/10

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.

5 Comments

  1. Stephen P Golemboski on April 20, 2018 at 1:23 pm

    Tried it before seeing this review, you are right, it is quite raw.

  2. Annettelele on September 2, 2019 at 11:15 am

    Started out good and ended kind and f bad it made my stomach kind of sick and I felt kind of hung over

  3. Leebert Chetram on November 11, 2019 at 5:19 am

    I bought a small bottle to sample and it taste really great. I am going to buy 750ml bottle to enjoy, I have tried many different brandy’s and this brand taste the best.

  4. Christine B Hoard-Barre on September 30, 2020 at 10:51 am

    I was pleasantly surprised by this brandy and thought it was pretty decent for the price. Good value. I’ll buy it again.

  5. Sha on January 5, 2024 at 6:59 pm

    I am not a Brandy drinker, I am more of a whiskey or fruity drinker. My husband bought this for me to “just try”. I love how smooth it is and I taste a hint of pecan. I loved it so much that we will certainly be keeping one in our cabinet from here on out. VSOP.

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