Jul 212014

deep eddy vodkaMy purchase of a 1.75 Liter of Deep Eddy Vodka at my favorite local liquor store was more of an informed decision than an impulsive one. Lately, I've been experimenting with a gluten-free diet. Since some vodkas are made from wheat and other glutenous grains, they are likely to contain some small level of gluten. The dietary advice for those who suffer from Celiac disease is that distilled liquors like Vodka, even though they are made from grains, are probably okay to drink. How is this possible? Apparently, grain-based vodkas lose most of their gluten in the distillation process. There is such small amounts of vodka in grain-based alcohols that most celiac health experts believe it is harmless for persons who suffer from Celiac disease. Unfortunately, not all sufferers of celiac disease are the same. Even a microscopic amount of gluten for my niece could have catastrophic consequences. For me, just about any type of alcohol probably doesn't pose much of a threat, but I decided to go as gluten-free as possible. Deep Eddy Vodka is 100% certified gluten-free. The box boasts the claim that Deep Eddy is distilled 10 times and 100% natural. But, the absence of gluten was only one reason to buy Deep Eddy. How about the taste of the vodka?

Deep Eddy is a Bargain

The price I paid for a 1.75 Liter of Deep Eddy was $19.99. Granted, my local liquor store is full of great deals, but Deep Eddy would still be a bargain at any store. Like many other American vodkas, Deep Eddy is made in Austin, Texas and is 80% / 40-Proof alcohol and distilled from potatoes. The bottle I bought came came with one other perk: It was packaged in a nicely boxed gift-set which included two logo'd glass jars with the Deep Eddy logo. Those big jars, suggest, that one might use their vodka to make those big fruity  foo-foo drinks with lime and/or lemonade.  If you've read my numerous other vodka reviews, you realize that I would have preferred a couple of martini glasses since that is the way I normally drink vodka. That's okay, I have plenty of martini glasses and the Deep Eddy jars make a nice addition to our assortment of bar glasses.  Deep Eddy was mainly purchased to replace my empty favorite bottle of Blue Ice Vodka which was also made from potatoes and certified gluten-free. Blue Ice has been the standard by which I judge all other vodkas. This one, however, was a few bucks cheaper. Could Deep Eddy be as good?

Taste Test

Deep Eddy proves once again that you don't have to pay good money for good vodka. I've paid more for other brands that aren't as good. Belvedere and Grey Goose immediately come to mind. I poured the first taste into my glass and tried it at room temperature. The initial taste was so smooth and light that I thought I had accidentally mixed water into my vodka. The finish went down like vanilla sugar water. I dried out the glass and tried it again and got the exact same outstanding result.  Deep Eddy is very clean, sterile, and somewhat of a sweet vodka. It might be a little too sweet for me to say it is my favorite over Blue Ice, but I would certainly buy it again at the great price of $20.00.  If you're a vodka enthusiast that likes ethanol taste that is so prevalent in many other vodkas like say, Sobieski, Deep Eddy might not be the best choice for you. I think the ethanol gives it an illusion of air, lightness and carbonation that some people like. To me, it tastes like the inside of a rubber balloon. I never did care for that flavor. I can overlook the sweetness especially when olives are added.  I mixed my first martini with Deep Eddy by vigorously shaking it inside a stainless steel shaker of ice and adding  two Mezzetta olives to the glass.  When my wife saw the interesting box on the counter, she too, decided she wanted to try a vodka drink rather than her usual Rob Roy. I made her a martini with ice and lime juice, which is very appropriate for a hot summer evening. The power of suggestion is just one of the strengths of this brand. The main strength is its taste and Deep Eddy Vodka makes one of the best martinis I've had since, well, the last drop of the Blue Ice left my house.

 Posted by at 10:39 am
Jun 022013

Kru82 VodkaAs I write this review, I have no idea if Kru82 vodka is from France or Holland - or both. My bottle clearly says that Kru 8s is distilled in France. Other reviews mention that it comes from Holland. Either way, this was an impulse purchase for me. I was leaving my Costco liquor store and spotted this 1.75 Liter bottle of vodka the very first time. The bottle even comes with a 200ML metal flash which the cashier told me was completely filled with vodka. Also, there was a tag attached the Kru bottle, giving it a 92 rating. Sadly, I cannot remember which publication gave Kru-82 this lofty rating and I have lost the tag. How could I be so careless? 

Like every other new vodka I try, it is solely for the purpose of making martinis and proving to myself whether or not I can ever be convinced that it is worth paying more for something other than Taaka. Believe me, I've tried plenty of vodkas that are under $25 for a 1.75 and much better than Taaka. Ruskova, Svedka, Superia and Fris are a few that come to mind. It's not that I don't appreciate the smoothness and other flavors of these vodkas, I just don't see the value in paying more for what I consider to be a very plain-tasting liquor. I like sipping on Martinis with two olives, shaken vigorously and served up in a vermouth coated glass. After the first few sips, the Taaka goes down just fine and never gives me a headache unless I drink too much (that is true with any liquor). It is also worth noting that I don't always agree with the tastes of other vodka review sites. Sobieski and Tito's are two vodkas that are loved by many that I don't find very good. Kru-82 is one of those rare occasions where I agree with the author of, VodkaBuzz.

My Impression of Kru-82 Vodka

How Does it Taste?

I poured my first sip of Kru-82 into my martini glass; swirled it and thought it had a crisp, clean aroma with very little burn to the nose. The first, warm sip was light, airy, with hints of ethanol similar to Tito's and Sobieski. The difference, however, is that the Kru-82 has a more pleasing, sugary finish to me than these other two vodkas. When shaken with ice and turned into a martini, the Kru-82 vodka was noticeably better than a Taaka martini, as it should be.
Though I prefer it to Sobieski and Tito's, I still wouldn't rank it among my favorites, or would I pay extra for it. If I had to put a number on it from 1-100, I'd give Kru-82 it's name: Kru-82 gets an 82 Score. Now, back to the mystery of where this vodka is made.

Is Kru-82 from Holland or France?

My bottle says, distilled in France, but everything I looked up online says Kru-82 is from Holland. Isn't that weird? I'm sure there is a logical answer to this mystery. Here is what is interesting: Most of the online reviews I've read show that the product is sold in a .750 liter metal flask, the same as my 200ml sample that came with my 1.75 liter glass bottle. It is also interesting to me how the opinions of this vodka range anywhere from horrible to delicious. Perhaps the difference in opinion either have to do with where the vodka is distilled or how it is bottled. At any rate, who do you believe? The mystery is as intriguing as a freshly, shaken martini.

Mar 092013

Monopolowa Vodka Made With PotatoesVodka made with potatoes tend to be my favorites.  There are two reasons I prefer them:

One: Since potatoes are a gluten-free starch, vodkas made from potatoes are healthier for those who have an intolerance or experience adverse reactions to gluten-based foods. If you like having a couple of martinis every day, this is an important consideration to make when choosing a brand of vodka.

Two: I've tried enough different brands to become convinced that I prefer the taste of vodka made from potatoes. Monopolowa vodka is no exception. It might not be quite as smooth as the Blue Ice, but it has other characteristics that have quickly endeared me to this brand.

Monopowola Vodka Described

Monopolowa is a popular imported potato vodka from Austria. I've noticed over the years, that Monopolowa is often the recommended vodka choice for customers at my local, Apple Jacks liquor store. At $26.00 for a 1.75 Liter bottle, it is a reasonable alternative to those pricier, over-rated tier-1 brands like Grey Goose. For me, even $26.00 represents a rather, high-priced vodka, so I've held off trying it up until now. The sale for $19.99 made Monopolowa too good to resist trying so I picked up a bottle. I loved the last couple of vodka brands I've had that were made from potatoes, so I looked forward to taking it home and using it in martinis.

Monopolowa Vodka Taste Rating

- 3.7 Stars
Once again, it has been proven to me that vodka made from potatoes are my favorites and make especially good martinis. I poured the first sip, neat and at room temperature into my glass and took a quick shot. The Monopolowa is not quite as smooth as the Blue Ice, but has a little more character. I noted white pepper, vanilla, caramel; another spice that I couldn't quite identify, and even a hint of potato peel. Shaken and poured into a glass with a couple of olives, and lightly coated with trubuno vermouth, the Monopolowa vodka makes an excellent martini.