This is a review of Minskaya vodka from Belarus. I sampled it in Germany in 2013. It’s clear, 40% alcohol, and I thought it was pretty fucking epic.
With Minskaya vodka (Мінская) we seem to finally have a brand that is unmistakably from Belarus.
I got it from the same online-shop where I had bought Kalinovaya, and again I didn’t think this would be anything special at all. The reason why I got it was simply because it said it was from Belarus.
flash is dead, long live flash?
The good news is that Minskaya vodka has a website. It’s called vodka-minskaya.com, and the landing page looks okay at first. Okay, it might be a bit weird that there’s a German slogan in the back, but no harm done:
Disaster strikes when you click on the bottle. And by disaster I mean this:
FOR VIEWING RUSSIAN CULT WEBSITE REQUIRES FLASHPLAYER 9 OR HIGHER. Eh.. no thanks.
There were four things I learned from this site, though.
Firstly, Minskaya vodka is produced by Minsk Kristall, supposedly the oldest (1893) and largest distillery in Belarus. For some reason I wasn’t able to find Minskaya vodka on their website, though:
The second thing I learned was that this vodka prides itself on being handmade. No computers are used in the process, and master distiller Sergey Mashkov supervises it.
Well, it seems as though Mr. Mashkov is now the director of a totally different distillery in Minsk, the Naroch Distillery. This distillery is apparently even older (1843) than the Minsk Distillery, and it seems to produce mostly cognac, rum, and whiskey:
The third thing I learned was that somebody really doesn’t like milk filters (hello, Parliament vodka):
And finally, the company behind Minskaya vodka is actually from Germany (their website is dead, though):
So again, it’s a bit of a mess.
Minskaya vodka is fuckin A
Back to our 2013 review of Minskaya vodka, though. It came in a nice black box that said LEGENDARY on the label. It reminded me of Kauffman. The price wasn’t in Kauffman territory, yet, but it was pretty high: 27€ for 700ml.
And again it claimed that this vodka was handmade. Like Tito’s Handmade? I wasn’t sure what that meant, but I liked the sound of it.
And I gotta say, this vodka was impressive. Talk about smoothness – Minskaya vodka was almost soothingly cool on the way down. And yet in the aftertaste, there was there was this heart-warming, gentle aroma that reminded me of caramel.
I loved the bottle design. It seemed like it might have been even prettier than Belvedere. So far only Kalinovaya and Crystal Head had a better design.
All in all, Minskaya vodka is extremely good. I don’t know what’s happening on their website, but I sure hope they don’t go out of business.