rough can be good
This is a review of Eristoff vodka from Italy. I sampled it in Germany in 2013. It’s clear, 37.5% alcohol, owned by Bacardi, claiming to be Georgian, and I thought it was a bit rough but good.
This one is a bit hard to pin down. The brand refers to itself as being from Georgia. They call it “land of the wolf”, which is why they put a howling wolf on the label. But that’s not the whole story.
where Eristoff vodka is really from
Remember the background of Smirnoff, how it went from being Russian to American? Or how the international Stolichnaya came to be from Latvia in the 1990s? The story of Eristoff vodka seems to be similar: the original recipe was owned by an Eristhavi family in Georgia, who later migrated to Russia and then to Italy. The brand is now owned by Bacardi.
I wrote an email to Eristoff to inquire, and they told me it was made in France. So France it is!
a site about wolves
So I went to eristoff.com and found a site full of slick design, company lore, and wolves:
The lore part was particularly long and winding:
At least I found out that Eristoff vodka is made from grain and charcoal-filtered:
I also found this YouTube ad:
It was about a bartender who interacts with a wolf and then becomes a sort of werewolf-like figure.
Or actually it was a dog that looked a bit like a wolf:
The Eristoff in the ad:
It was all pretty cheesy.
what I look for in a vodka
Anyway, let’s get back to our review of Eristoff vodka.
When I drink vodka, I’m usually looking for two things: smoothness in the taste and aroma in the aftertaste. I want it to go down easily, as if it was really just some kind of “little water”. And then, when it’s down, I want it to develop a lasting aroma, something warming and nice.
Eristoff vodka is surprisingly fun
There are, however, instances when vodka doesn’t have to be smooth. Take Partisan for example. I didn’t find that one to be overly smooth, but it sure was enjoyable. This one is a bit similar in this regard.
Eristoff vodka isn’t the easiest vodka to drink – it actually puts up a bit of a fight on its way down. But it tastes a bit sweet, and there is more of that sweetness in its aftertaste. I have to say I enjoyed it. And I found that it went pretty well with some pickles and some bread on the side – neat and at room temperature.
The bottle design looked alright, and the price was really good (11€/700ml).
the problem with ratings
All in all, this isn’t your super-refined Belvedere or Beluga. I don’t think it’s even a Parliament or a Danzka. It tastes too rough for that. Which is why I can’t to give it a higher rating. But still, it’s a fun vodka.
To hell with ratings, I suggest you try this one!