Nothing invokes images of 90s-era MTV Spring Break parties like vodka. It’s cheap and potent, and that’s why it has its reputation as a party drink. However, this reputation is exactly what makes people dismiss the notion that vodka can be a suitable sipping spirit.
In fact, it’s actually a great spirit to enjoy straight out of a glass bottle. But rather than picking up the cheapest vodka from the store, how about stepping up your game and enjoying something better? Check out our picks for the best vodka to drink straight.
Chopin Family Reserve Potato Vodka
You can tell a lot about someone by the vodka they drink. True vodka fans aspire to the spirit’s pure expression and appreciate its versatility in both classic and contemporary drinks. True vodka fans also know that Chopin Potato Vodka is the most sought-after variety in America. The small-batch distillation and subsequent aging in oak barrels over two years makes Chopin Family Reserve the crisp, clean vodka you want to reach for when the occasion demands a true libation of distinction.
Chopin Potato Vodka is naturally gluten-free and made from potatoes, not grain. The nose is fresh and earthy with a creamy mouthfeel. The crisp, clean notes and subtle earthy finish will leave you wanting another.
Nikka Coffey Vodka
Nikka Coffey Vodka is a modern take on the classic vodka and the result of a distillation process that’s been made in the same still as Nikka’s award-winning whiskies. It's then filtered through white birch charcoal, which lends it its incredible smoothness. The combination of years dedicated to the art of distillation, the use of locally sourced ingredients, and tradition has led to a creation that reflects all that is good about Japan.
You'll taste zesty notes that contrast with the vodka's sweetness, as well as a hint of sweetness and a milky mouthfeel. The vodka is famous for its refreshing taste, thanks to its wheat and barley base. It is smooth, clean and very well-rounded. Enjoy it neat or on the rocks. Trust us on this one.
Stolichnaya Elit Vodka
The smooth taste of Stolichnaya Elit is unlike any other vodka you’ve ever tried. It has a crisp, clean finish that comes together with smoky spice. The creators of Stolichnaya Elit frown upon mixing it with juices or other sweet concoctions that would mask or tarnish the quality of this superior vodka.
It is carefully crafted using a centuries-old Russian recipe and a revolutionary freeze filtration process. The result is an exquisite product that sets a new standard for consumers and creates a new category of vodka consumption.
The makers don’t really condone mixing this vodka with other drinks so just serve it chilled and enjoy it on the rocks.
Smooth and mellow, Belvedere is the original and true expression of luxury vodka. Its unique recipe combines more than 600 years of Polish Vodka-making tradition with new technology for a truly authentic Poland vodka that's perfect for celebrating any occasion.
True to the traditions of its forefathers, it's proudly made one drop at a time from the finest Polish rye in carefully crafted copper stills. The end result is an exceptional vodka whose smooth, crystal-clear taste and velvety richness make it perfect for straight shots.
You get a twist of lemon zest, followed by a long finish with hints of vanilla and clotted cream. You may also pick out slight notes of almond or oak, a suggestion of white pepper or spice, and natural creamy tones.
Russian Standard Vodka
There are two things about Russian Standard Vodka that make it unique, the taste and the purity. Made with 100% winter wheat from Russia’s Black Steppes, this vodka has a smooth taste that’s strong enough to stand on its own but is not overpowering enough to cover up in a cocktail. It’s known for its purity, too – filtered more than any other premium vodka and distilled four times, it’s purer than most. That translates into less burn and a clean, lovely taste.
Russian Standard’s Vodka is one of the best premium spirits on the market today. Its exceptional purity and strong taste make it the ideal vodka whether you’re drinking it straight or using it to create a cocktail.
Grey Goose Vodka
There are many kinds of vodka, but very few, in fact, possess the quality and class of Grey Goose Vodka. Grey Goose's proprietary five-step distillation process combines fine French wheat with pure artesian spring water to create a rich and complex spirit of unmatched smoothness.
Considered one of the best-tasting vodkas on the market, Grey Goose is a smooth vodka that is perfect for mixing or drinking neat. With tasting notes that include citrusy undertones and hints of vanilla, it is definitely one of the best easy-drinking vodkas out there.
For those of you who don't like plain vodka because they don't like how plain it tastes, Ciroc has a lot of different flavors of vodka that will keep you interested.
Ciroc Vodka is an ultra-premium vodka that embraces the extraordinary on every level, from the distilled Mauzac Blanc and Ugni Blanc grapes farmed in France's ancient Gaillac and Cognac areas to the revolutionary cold fermentation and maceration procedures used in winemaking, to its delicate aromatics and smooth, naturally refined flavor.
Whether you prefer peach or mango, Ciroc vodka offers something for everyone to enjoy. Go ahead and discover this ultra-premium vodka's silky, naturally refined flavor.
Have you ever wanted to drink premium vodka but couldn’t justify spending the money on a top brand? Welcome to Absolut! This alternative is great for anyone who wants to drink high-quality vodka without having to spend hundreds on it. At an affordable price, you can even try out different flavors if you find the original too bland.
Absolut is made from 100% natural ingredients (mostly wheat) and is 40% heaver than other brands making it richer and smoother. This makes it more visually appealing and more likely to excite the taste buds.
One sip and you'll know it's different. Although smooth, clean and crisp, Tito's Handmade Vodka is unmistakably alive with flavor. Made from the finest ingredients of American grains and water from an artesian well deep in the Texas Hill Country, it is micro-distilled in an old-fashioned "Pot Still", which produces a spirit of incomparable excellence. Artisan distillation techniques yield a product of exceptional clarity. The vodka is then filtered through the finest activated carbon to remove impurities and impart a smooth, soft finish.
It’s smooth, sweet, and highly drinkable. Big on taste, mellow on the tongue with a soft mouth-feel and a rich finish with sweet cream and peppermint notes. There are many bottles of vodka out there, but few can boast the pure taste and distinctive character as Tito’s Handmade Vodka.
Whether sipped straight over ice, used as a mixer or diced up in a cocktail, Ketel One has a strong taste with big, bold flavors.
Ketel One, originally distilled in the Netherlands in 1540, is named after the first copper still on record, “Distilleerketel”. Ketel One is the original vodka that uses handmade stills and is distilled from 100% wheat to deliver an unparalleled smoothness. Ketel One's award-winning master distiller is devoted to creating the best tasting, smoothest vodka around. And with this passion, comes a true obsession over quality.
It’s smooth, soft and so enjoyable, definitely one of the best for sipping neat. Start with this classic one then move on to the other flavors to truly experience its magic.
FACTS ABOUT VODKA
- “Vodka” comes from the Slavic word for water, voda.
- Started from the bottom and now the world’s best selling brand, Smirnoff was founded by a Russian peasant, Pyotr Smirnov. He is the epitome of self-made, capitalizing on every economic upswing in Russia to build his vodka empire.
- Millions believe vodka originated in Russia. In reality, Poland originated this spirit in the 8th century.
- Vodka is one of the purest alcoholic beverages available, and it's really healthier for you than other alcohol. Vodka is free of any of these things: sodium, yeast, carbs, or fat. It's just water and ethanol.
- Almost anything can be used to make vodka. Vodka may be created from a variety of ingredients, including potatoes, barley, rye, maize, whey, and grapes, all of which add to the flavor of the spirit.
- Many vodkas are available, but just a few are regarded as top-shelf. Absolut, Ketel One, and Tito's are just a few of the well-known brand names of premium vodka.
While price does not always equal quality, we hope this guide helped you find the best vodka to drink straight. Our picks range from $10-$50 with a variety of flavors based on your preference.
If your goal is to enjoy vodka straight, don’t bother with the bottom shelf stuff. We want you to be able to fully enjoy your drink without any bitterness or harshness ruining the experience. And that starts with buying a good bottle of vodka in the first place.
And if you think that we left out some better options, don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments section below.