What is Botanical Vodka?

Natural botanicals like herbs, spices, flowers, and fruits are used to flavor botanical vodka, a form of flavored vodka. Due to its distinctive and rich flavors, which can give any drink depth and complexity, it is a favorite among mixologists and cocktail enthusiasts.

A bottle service tray featuring a bottle of Ketel One Botanical Vodka

The history of botanical vodka, its production process, and some of the well-known botanicals that are utilized in it will all be covered in this article.

The Origins of Botanical Vodka

Botanical vodka has been around for centuries, with the first known recipe dating back to the 16th century. At that time, vodka was typically flavored with herbs and spices to mask its harsh taste and odor.

Homemade of herbal tincture from fresh greater celandine flowers and vodka in a glass jar on a wooden table

Over time, the practice of infusing vodka with botanicals evolved into an art form, with different regions and cultures developing their own unique recipes and techniques.

How Botanical Vodka is Made

Botanical vodka is typically made using a process called maceration, which involves steeping the botanicals in high-proof vodka for a period of time to extract their flavors and aromas.

The length of time and the ratio of botanicals to vodka can vary depending on the recipe and the desired flavor profile.

several bottles of Ketel One Botanical flavored vodka

After the maceration process is complete, the vodka is typically filtered to remove any impurities and to clarify the liquid.

Some distillers may also use a process called distillation to further refine the vodka and to create a smoother and more refined taste.

There are a wide variety of botanicals that can be used in the production of botanical vodka, each with its own unique flavor and aroma. Here are some of the most popular botanicals used in botanical vodka:

Juniper Berries

Juniper berries are the primary botanical used in the production of traditional gin, but they are also a popular choice for botanical vodka.

Juniper berries have a piney and resinous flavor that can add a crisp and refreshing taste to vodka cocktails.


Lavender is a popular botanical in the world of mixology due to its floral and herbaceous flavor. It is often used in cocktails to add a subtle sweetness and a calming aroma.

Lavender Field in the summer


Citrus fruits such as lemon, lime, and grapefruit are commonly used in the production of botanical vodka to add a bright and zesty flavor. Citrus botanicals can

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Written by Rocco

Rocco is a Florida State University alumnus with years of bartending and hospitality experience. From slinging hundreds of vodka sodas a night in jam-packed college bars to serving carefully crafted cocktails in upscale restaurants, there’s not much he hasn’t done behind a bar. Now, Rocco shares his knowledge and passion for all things alcohol-related here on My Bartender for bibulous readers everywhere to enjoy.

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