When it’s summer, and you’re choosing what type of vodka to put in your Moscow Mule, your first thought may be deciding between Russian or Polish vodka. But other Eastern European countries like Ukraine also produce excellent vodkas.
These high quality brands can spruce up not only your Mules but your Martinis, Cosmopolitans, and Bloody Marys.
No longer will we allow you to be ignorant of the possibilities of Ukrainian Vodka because here are the best Ukrainian vodkas you can find:
Nemiroff's distillery has been creating vodka, or "horilka" as it is called in Ukrainian, since 1872. They've used the past 150 years to perfect their recipe because Nemiroff is smooth and easy on your palate. As a wheat-based vodka featuring the addition of honey, caraway seeds, and pure well water, it brings subtle notes of vanilla and warm cinnamon to the tongue at first before passing into the classic neutral flavor of vodka, finishing on a spicy note.
While the grain it is made from is not unique, Nemiroff's choice of additional ingredients and use of well water certainly is.
Khor Platinum Vodka
Simply looking at the distillation and filtration process for this vodka tells you it is going to be good. Khor is unusual because it is a corn-based vodka that goes through a silver filtration process, then a charcoal filter process, and then gets filtered through birch and alder trees. The well water they add to dilute the pure spirit goes through a similarly rigorous filtration process.
Filtered in such a manner, this Ukrainian vodka emerges on the other end with a slightly sweet flavor and silky texture.
This vodka can be consumed on its own but lends a uniquely interesting flavor to any vodka cocktail.
Made with wheat grown in Ukraine's rich, fertile "чернозём"(chernozem) or "black soil," Pristine vodka is an incredibly special vodka. This soil enriches the wheat the vodka comes from, translating into an almost bright yet spicy taste reminiscent of ginger and citronella.
Though Pristine might ring in on the more expensive side of Ukrainian vodkas, you can tell where the extra money went, and the cost is worth it.
Zirkova One Ultra Premium Vodka
Zirkova might be the only brand you find anywhere that crafts its vodka for specific occasions. Their Zirkova One's subtle taste of almond, vanilla, and lemon makes it the perfect sipping vodka when chilled. Meanwhile, their Zirkova Together line is intended to improve your Moscow Mules and Vodka Sours.
Zirkova also has a unique social element: their commitment to and assistance of human rights causes around the world, reflected in their slogan "Budmo" – "let's just be" in Ukrainian.
Khortytsa De Luxe Vodka
This multi-award-winning vodka brings an almost unparalleled smoothness to bear. The combination of a sweet and citrusy taste, a silky texture, and a dry finish mean Khortytsa deluxe is your next vodka to try for sipping neat.
This particular vodka brand is one of a few using shungite as a filter, giving Khortytsa its unique smoothness and characteristic taste.
Ukrainian Heritage Rye Vodka
Though Rye vodka is typically a Polish specialty, Ukraine's fields grow equally tasty rye, and thus, Ukraine can make equally tasty Rye vodka. Ukrainian Heritage Rye vodka boasts a delightfully spicy taste only assisted by the intensely filtered well water it contains.
This particular product also comes from the Khortytsa distillery, meaning the shungite filtration process makes it smooth and spicy.
Shevkoff may be more difficult to find, but it is among the smoothest Ukrainian vodkas. Shevkoff's initial taste is sweet, its texture almost syrupy, and its color pleasingly clear. Among the best Ukrainian vodkas, Shevkoff is one of the best vodkas to drink neat and enjoy in the style of a sophisticated Eastern European.
Once again, it is hard to find, but if you see it, snag the bottle!
And those are the best Ukrainian vodkas! If you want to start enjoying some “horilka” in your cocktails instead of tired Stoli or Svedka, keep your eye out for these Ukrainian alternatives!
If you’ve already tried some of them, feel free to leave a comment about your favorite to convince your fellow cocktail enthusiasts to give it a try!
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