Vodka goes in and out of fashion, but not its popularity with drinkers. It remains the biggest-selling spirit in the U.S, and even the Scots drink more vodka than whisky. In the U.S., according to the Code of Federal Regulations, vodka is defined as “neutral spirits so distilled, or so treated after distillation with charcoal or other materials, as to be without distinctive character, aroma, taste, or color.” Nevertheless, there are subtle differences between vodka made from potatoes and from grain, for example, two of the most common base products for distilling into vodka. (In recent years, a wide variety of other bases have been used to make vodka.) Infused vodka has usually been infused with natural products (e.g. real lemons), while flavored vodka can mean it contains either natural or artificial flavorings. Rules regarding the acceptable strength of vodka differ slightly around the world. Within the European Union, vodkas can be bottled at as low as 75 proof, while in most countries outside the European Union, and in the U.S., vodka must be at least 80 proof.

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Review: Christiania Vodka

By Christopher Null | December 4, 2007 |

Here we have another high-end, traditional potato vodka, straight outta Norway (note the neck of the bottle) and distilled six times, bottled at 80 proof. The makers in fact claim it to be the world’s first ultra-premium vodka, with a heritage dating to 1602. The flavor is indeed smooth, especially for a potato vodka, herbal…

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Review: Sobieski Vodka

By Christopher Null | November 16, 2007 |

God bless Sobieski Vodka. The company’s goal is to “overthrow overpriced vodka.” Sobieski comes at a suggested retail price of $11, and if you can find it, you can probably get for even less. So, how’s it tasted? Distilled in Poland from rye, it had the most interesting flavor of the three vodkas I tried,…

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Review: Blue Ice Vodka

By Christopher Null | November 16, 2007 |

I got a little misty eyed when I heard about Blue Ice Vodka: It’s an old-fashioned spirit distilled from potatoes. It’s also made right here in the U. S. of A., in, where else, Idaho. Spuds give Blue Ice a strong, traditional flavor. If I didn’t know better I’d think I was drinking Russian vodka.…

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Review: Boomerang Vodka

By Christopher Null | November 16, 2007 |

OK, when I started Drinkhacker I had no idea how much vodka there would be. While the ultra-premium vodka market may not be what it used to be a few years ago, it’s still cruising along, with new releases every month. I’ve received three different bottlings, from three countries and with three different types of…

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Recipe: The Perfect Cosmopolitan

By Christopher Null | November 13, 2007 |

There are as many recipes for Cosmos on the web as there are people to drink them. Here’s my take on creating a Cosmo that goes down easy and allows for plenty of creative tinkering if you like. SPOILER: Secret ingredients ahead! Drinkhacker’s Perfect Cosmopolitan 1 1/4 oz. vodka 1 oz. cranberry juice 1/2 oz.…

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Review: 267 Infusions Vodka Cranberry

By Christopher Null | November 13, 2007 |

Maybe you’ve seen these guys at liquor stores: Squished, stretched-out bottles with fruit floating inside. You can’t help but pick one of 267 Infusions’ eight flavored spirits up. Though 267 will tell you it’s infused, not flavored. I’ve tried three of 267’s vodka-based spirits, orange and lemon infusions, and now Vodka Cranberry. Some thoughts on…

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Recipe: Grand Elderflower Cocktail

By Christopher Null | November 9, 2007 |

If you haven’t tried St. Germain’s Elderflower liqueur yet, run, don’t walk, to your nearest liquor store and buy a bottle. Or rather, ask them to order you a bottle, because chances are it won’t be on hand. I lucked out and found some last week and have been enjoying experimental cocktails with it ever…

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Recipe: Pumpkin Pie Martini

By Christopher Null | November 5, 2007 |

Here’s a fun holiday cocktail, courtesy of Blue Ice Vodka, which I’ll be reviewing in the near future. Pumpkin Pie Martini 1 oz. vodka 1/4 oz. Da Vinci Pumpkin Pie Syrup Rim a cocktail glass with cinnamon sugar. Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into glass. Garnish with an orange wheel.…

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New Recipe: The B.B.C.

By Christopher Null | October 11, 2007 |

As part of my blueberry kick, and largely by happenstance, the good folks at Beefeater sent along some recipes for what they’re trying to kick off as “sharp’ners,” defined as “a London term for a quick, social drink that allows friends to connect without committing an entire evening.” The idea is that “getting a drink”…

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Original Recipe: The Violet Blue

By Christopher Null | October 4, 2007 |

Recently I read that the blueberry was the healthiest of all fruits. Number one, baby! So I immediately set my mind to thinking about cocktails to take advantage of the humble berry of blue. It’s harder than you’d think; blueberry doesn’t play well with others. Eventually I hit on it. Here’s my concoction, and darned…

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