Tag Archive: Vodka Reviews

I Prefer the Non Flavored Vodkas

OK.  Admittedly, I am reaching out for the easy.  We have only just begun to really review vodkas, and two thirds of my initial posts are the uber popular brands.  No worries. We will get deep, very deep in our review selections. We also will continue to populate this site with, well, vodka facts….so as a consumer, you can understand a bit about this wonderful drink

Today we look at Grey Goose.  This is a French made vodka fashioned from grain. No doubt the French will state it is the water that makes the taste. Many vodkas are fashioned from grain, so this is no problem.  Easily one of the most recognizable brands out there, the Goose has flown all over the world. Virtually any bar in the world you can call the Goose, but you will pay.  All that marketing comes with a price.

Grey Goose (click on the name for the website) starts really smooth. So smooth, the temptation is to dive in too deep at first. The smoothness rides through the palate for most of the experience, then finishes a little more roughly. The ending of the Grey Goose experience to me introduces a bit of pure chemical taste.  An unpleasant one. The hint of wheat in the initial taste run is subtle and enjoyable. Initially, you are quite unaware that you are drinking a 80 proof drink.  But when the chemical tastes kicks, you feel like it is falsely flavored ever clear, and the proof is 150.  Not what I look for in a vodka. This finish singularly has me shying away from consistently ordering it. And further, the finish begins to lob it in with the tastes of many nasty, less expensive vodkas.

The Goose took a little while, but it jumped on the band wagon of flavored vodkas as well. The flavoring somewhat seals the bad chemical finish, leaving a decent drinking experience, whether straight or mixed with your energy drink so you can amp up for a rave. But in my opinion, this merely masks the taste. I am not certain why you would want to pay the Grey Goose prices to go this route.  Get flavored Stoli or some other rot gut instead…..it costs so much less, and lets face it, if you are drinking flavored vodka and/or mixing them with Red Bull or the like, face it, you are there to get hammered and quantity becomes much more important than quality.

And in this case, quantity comes at much less a cost. Speaking of cost, be prepared to separate $55-65 of a 1.75 litre bottle.  This is the same pricing as my beloved Belvedere.  Problem is, I just do not think it is worth the cost. And when a eatery has only Grey Goose and no Belvedere, I am pissed…..but there you go, marketing and branding is everything.  I give Grey Goose 5 out of 10 bottles

Well, I cannot continue to let The Rum Guy get plowed on a nightly basis in the spirit of bringing us the best rums, so I decided to jump on the Low Budget Review band wagon and review my drink of choice:  Vodka. The market for vodka has exploded as anyone knows who has been in a bar in the last decade.  Maybe the market prime has come and gone in main stream popularity.  Regardless, it is time to review some vodkas and pass on our observations.

Here we review Frozen Ghost Vodka.  In fact, The Rum Guy gave me this bottle as a gift on one of our live performances, so that I may have a bottle to go on stage with. Nice of him. With Frozen Ghost, the branding becomes of utmost importance. This vodka produced in Western Canada, presumably from the millions of miles of grain they have in central Western Canada (think Saskatchewan) is apparently all about branding. You really cannot find much about it on the Frozen Ghost Website. The PR, developed by Dallas firm Levinson and Hill, (and if you look at the states they distribute in, all southwest, you understand a bit better) has gone to great lengths to further the mystic of the brand aligning well within the supernatural theme. There is no mention of corporate on the website.  There is this silly story or legend of how the vodka came to be…..it is all brilliantly distant in shades of grey and black. Good going.  But it does nothing to tell me of the product.

The Mystic Is Played Up
Well let me do this for you. The packaging is consistent with the theme, and affective.  At approximately $45 for the larger 1.75 liter bottle, it is not the cheapest, nor most expensive in this crowded market. Rum Guy parted a few dollars for this gift, and I appreciate it. The aroma is standard for a vodka.  For most vodkas, if form your opinion based upon aroma, you will never drink it.  Frozen Ghost is no different. As with a lot of grain based vodkas, the goal is to produce a robust tasting vodka packed with good punch, yet with a smooth finish. Upon first taste of Frozen Ghost, the impression it leaves is a bit on the chemical side. A little rough on the front end. As you swirl in your mouth, it does create a smooth texture which leads to a quite pleasant finish. In the end, you are not aware you are drinking a potent alcohol. As you continue to sip, like most vodkas, the initial harshness wears a bit to settle into a nice relaxing  drink.  I prefer it over ice rather than martini style. However, when mixed with a slight of olive juice or vermouth, it makes a stellar martini. It does need to be well shaken, rather, violently shaken to form those thin ice slivers in your martini.  This is the optimuum set up. Let the martini air a bit in the glass after you have done the shakes.  You will be rewarded with a nice drink that goes well best prior to any meal or appetizer. Yes, this is best as its own appetizer or merely the party drink of choice when entertaining. Overall, I rate this a very pleasant vodka with a decent price point.  OK.  It is not exactly Low Budget Review friendly, but it is a good treat if you feel like parting with a few bucks.

Now  if you wish to play into the marketeer’s hands, you can go to the website at the link above and get the story of Tobias.  They try to sell this on the bottle as well. I must hand it to them, they are very stable in their approach to branding.  They will try to tell you that this vodka is from a srping on a farm in Western Canada.  Again, good stroy, but one anyone of us with half of a brain can come up with.  Don’t buy it, just judge Frozen Ghost Vodka for yourself based upon its drinkablelity, and maybe its potnetial for you to get lucky on St. Valentine’s Day.

After much deliberating, and finally finding the bottom of the bottle (a must for us reviewers), I give Frozen Ghost Vodka a 7 on a scale of 10 overall. It scores about a 6 on being drinkable, but the price point enters into the formula to raise its rating slightly.  Go out and try for yourself, and check back here often for more vodka reviews.