Review: Zakuska Vodka

Review: Zakuska Vodka

Zakuska Vodka was pitched to me as “a simple, no-B.S. vodka served as a chilled shot.” No flavors, no gimmicks. It launched only in 2022, and despite the Baltic-sounding name, it’s actually made in Columbus, Ohio, distilled from red winter wheat and corn, and bottled — noticeably — unfiltered, rendering it slightly translucent. The label’s a conversation piece on its own, looking like photos cut out of magazines from various eras and pasted onto the antique-styled glass.

The bottle’s art, but the vodka inside is indeed as promised: Clean, crisp, and perfect for bracing shots with caviar, oysters, or, it would seem, chicken nuggets.

A bold ethanol note fills the nose, ever so slightly earthy with just a touch of mint and rosemary. Clean as could be, with hospital overtones, but never approaching Band-Aid or rubbery qualities. It’s quite refreshing on the palate — quite creamy in body — and mercifully free of any sweetness at all. The finish sees some secondary qualities emerging, but they’re mild, reminiscent of dark chocolate, cinnamon, and mineral-driven slate, all nice foils to the more herbal nose. I got virtually none of the flavors and aromas that the official tasting notes suggest (figs and honey?), but this is a spirit that’s so gentle and innocuous that you can likely project just about anything onto it and go to bed happy.

If I have any complaint it’s with the closure: The snap-on stopper doesn’t adhere well and tends to pop off. Drink fast.

80 proof.

A / $35 /

Zakuska 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 Comment

  1. Arthur on May 26, 2023 at 7:03 am

    Thank you so much for the review Christopher! I apoligize about the topper, we had some compatibility issues with some of the bottles, will be fixing it in the next round of bottling. I have some corks i can send in the meantime if you like. Feel free to reach out.

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