Raise a glass: The world’s best vodkas
World Vodka Day (October 4th) is fast approaching and it offers the perfect time to raise your glasses to one of the planet’s favourite alcoholic drinks. While vodka is often associated with Russia, and some of the finest and most expensive vodkas originate from there, it is a drink that is produced in many countries and enjoyed all over the world.
We take a look at some of the very best.
Easily the most expensive brand on the list, Kors Vodka is marketed at the vodka connoisseur and comes with the very fitting tag line “Pure Handmade Perfection Reserved For The Lucky Few”.
Even after a century, Kors is still considered by many to be the world’s purest and most exclusive vodka. Its flawless taste has been enjoyed by the Royals at the beginning of the twentieth century and the same distillation recipe is still being used today.
Limited editions, iconic handmade crystal bottle, hand painted gold decorations, luxurious packaging and private VIP membership are just a few characteristics that make Kors one of the world’s most expensive and sort after vodka brands.
The Kors Vodka 24k, George V Edition is a handmade limited edition vodka with only 250 bottles ever produced. This comes with a price tag of $24.5k.
Voted the World’s Best Vodka at the prestigious San Francisco Spirits Competition, Chase Vodka is probably the finest English potato vodka. Made on a Herefordshire family farm, they are the first and only UK distillery to offer a super-premium vodka that is made entirely from seed to bottle on one estate. The resultant spirit is exquisite quality vodka with true provenance.
To make it, organically grown, gluten free Lady Claire and Lady Rosetta potatoes from the farm are mashed, fermented, stripped and distilled, using traditional methods not changed since the early 1900s. Each bottle remains hand filled and sealed on site, ensuring a truly single-estate process from potato to bottle.
This highly skilled, artisan process uses state of the art equipment, including a bespoke copper batch pot and unique 70 foot rectification column (the tallest in Europe), which results in beautifully pure vodka that is deliciously smooth and has a naturally sweet and creamy taste.
A 70cl bottle of Chase will set you back £31.95 from 31dover.com.
The Lakes Vodka
The Lakes Vodka from The Lakes Distillery is the only vodka to be produced and distilled in Cumbria. As one of the leading and newly emerging group of craft distilleries, The Lakes Distillery produces vodka in a traditional, artisan copper pot still using water taken direct from the River Derwent which flows just 150m from the distillery’s site in the picturesque Lake District National Park. The Lakes Vodka is distilled slowly over six hours for greater purity, character and complexity.
The use of traditional distilling techniques and an artisan copper pot still is bringing back the art of vodka creation to the spirit industry. The quality of The Lakes Vodka is so good that it is best enjoyed neat, either poured after being in the freezer for an hour, or with ice.
The Lakes Distillery is a craft distillery which specialises in small batch craft distilled spirit, meaning every bottle is produced with care and attention.
A 70cl bottle costs £29.95 from lakesdistillery.com.
Snow Queen is an extra premium vodka possessing exceptional smoothness so it can be drunk neat.
The Snow Queen bottle, verging on the kitsch, is as sumptuous as it is sexy and extremely eye-catching. Emanating from wintery Kazakhstan, this pure spirit, produced from high quality 100% organic wheat, honey and spring water from the Ala-Tau mountains on the Kazakhstan-China border, is distilled five times (three is the normal for most vodkas).
A 70cl bottle retails for £34.95 on Harrods.com.
Ciroc is an inspired vodka distilled from fine French grapes. This innovation in French craftsmanship uses a cold fermentation process, unique in the world of vodka, that preserves the grape’s distinct freshness.
It is distilled five times and finished in a copper pot still in the legendary Cognac Region of France. Ciroc is a taste experience that is refreshingly different and elegantly smooth. A 70cl bottle retails for £33.95 at thewhiskyexchange.com.
Sipsmith Sipping Vodka
Carefully crafted using England’s finest wheat, Sipsmith’s Sipping Vodka reflects the distillery’s commitment to crafting sublimely sippable spirits.
A testament to how Sipsmith handcraft all their award-winning spirits, this vodka is distilled in copper for purity and made with the very best spirit from the heart of the distillation run.
This means there is no need to filter the vodka, or add glycerine, fructose or any aromatisers: enjoy pure, unadulterated Sipping Vodka. A soft, smooth and creamy mouth-feel develops to deliver a rounded and warming brightness on the palate with hints of sweet vanilla and biscuit.
A 70cl bottle of Sipsmith Sipping Vodka costs £28 from johnlewis.com.
Demijohn’s Elderflower Vodka
Demijohn’s Elderflower Vodka is a unique drink made by artisan cheesemakers in Somerset. Best known for their Godminster cheeses, this beautiful infused organic spirit vodka has been chosen by Demijohn for its distinctive flavour and clever balance of sweetness.
The elderflowers, handpicked from the Somerset hedgerows, are infused in organic vodka and sugar to create an exciting seasonal drink. It has a very unusual nose that just spells party and summer and an individual crisp, slightly sweet taste of white elderflowers. Think of your best homemade Elderflower Cordial with a delightful kick!
It is the perfect drink when served either unadulterated over ice or as a longer drink with tonic.
Priced at £5.40/100ml it is available from Demijohn shops in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Oxford and York or online at demijohn.co.uk/.
The Tamova Vodka
The surprise inclusion on the list and only goes to prove that price does not always suggest quality. The Tamova Vodka is a premium vodka produced from the finest grain and triple distilled. It’s a smooth, rounded vodka with a slight sweetness at the end.
The triple distilled spirit is reduced to bottling strength and using demineralised water and then filtered twice before bottling. Each bottle is inverted and rinsed with spirit prior to filling. The bottles are then capped, labelled and packed into tray and shrink before being palletised and wrapped.
So far in 2015, the Tamova Vodka has won a Silver medal at the International Spirit Challenge and a Silver medal at the International Wine & Spirit Competition. Serve frozen in a shot glass, to compliment fish and potato salad.
A 70cl bottle costs only £9.99 from Aldi but we could not find fault and enjoyed every last drop.
From Cognac in France, this breakthrough wheat-based small-batch ultra-premium vodka has achieved global success and won a Platinum medal at the World Spirits Championship. Clean and fresh, with a smooth, creamy texture. A 70cl bottle of Grey Goose costs £33.95 from thewhiskyexchange.com.
Enjoy your glass of vodka tonight, but in moderation of course!