Back in 2006 I used to be a big vodka fan. Screwdrivers, vodka tonics, vodka and cranberry, the occasional vodka martini, or just sipping it straight – vodka was my personal potion. Through the years, I’ve grown an affinity for the taste and class of Scotch, but I think it’s time I took a stroll down memory lane and invited an old friend over for a pleasant evening.
Back in the day, the common vodka varieties found at a typical get-together were either Smirnoff or Absolut. I was never a fan of these, truth be told, and would always tend to water them down with mixers. Grey Goose was always out of my price range, even though it had that smoothness that I wanted.
It wasn’t until I’d been well into my gin phase that I found a vodka that was both affordable and smooth; Ketel One. Distilled from 100% wheat at the Nolet Distillery in Schiedam, the Netherlands, Ketel One has been in production for over 300 years – since 1691, to be exact.
On the nose, Ketel One is gentle. There is barely any odor to be detected at all, but what is there is the slight tinge that whispers “Hallo, een goede vriend”. The taste is equally as exquisite. Almost flavorless, save for a slight bitterness on the finish, this vodka leaves practically no burn to speak of and maintains its flavor the whole way down.
If you’re looking to give a slight bite to a cocktail or a martini, this is one vodka that won’t bite too hard, which is nice when you’re out with friends on a Tuesday night. Know what I mean?
At around $20-$25 per 750ml bottle, Ketel One is an affordable and great tasting vodka that rivals others such as Grey Goose for the sheer smoothness of the drink. And seriously, what’s an extra five bucks if you’re looking at a drink whose primary flavor is burning?