New Amsterdam Vodka

New Amsterdam VodkaHow do you rate New Amsterdam Vodka?  

Our Reader Score
[Total: 4 Average: 3.8]

It’s not because I like Cheap Vodka that I couldn’t wait to try New Amsterdam Vodka. For me, really cheap Vodka is Taaka. There are better vodka brands that are still considered cheap by vodka drinkers, where-as Taaka is considered downright undrinkable by some. So how does New Amsterdam Compare? I thought very highly of New Amsterdam Gin and numerous friends agreed that it is a great gin for the price, so this is one I looked forward to trying and because it is priced about 50% higher than Taaka, I anxiously expected it to be notably better than what I would personally consider a, cheap vodka. So, how does New Amsterdam Stand up to a  cheap vodka and for that matter, a better one?

Ringing out the New Year with New Amsterdam Vodka

New Amsterdam Tasting Notes

To me, tasting Vodka is often like hearing musical notes on a staff. Each flavor has its own pitch. The darker, heavier ones are lower on the staff and the crisper, light and thin ones, are higher up on the staff. I Must say that New Amsterdam is a very high-pitched Vodka. It has a very crisp, thin bite to its nose and rings crisper and more bitter on the very first sip. If this does not sound like a ringing endorsement, it is not a bad one either. New Amsterdam has an adjustment period where you have to convince yourself that the thin bitter front isn’t going to go down too harshly. This Vodka is not overly harsh going down, but it does have a very shallow, thin bite that burns the top-end of your palate. It is crisp, thin and sweet, yet not much in the way of complexity or character. I believe that some people rate vodka on how little flavor it has. While Taaka is a truly cheap vodka I think it actually has more character and flavor than the New Amsterdam vodka at nearly half the price. I won’t mistake character and complexity for being an un-smooth vodka. I’ve come to appreciate the darker nose; vanilla, butter, rum and caramel in vodkas like Pearl or even the bargain-based bottom end Taaka. If Taaka and Pearl Vodka are a low A, then the New Amsterdam vodka is a high C above the treble-cleff staff. New Amsterdam is tinny, thin and crisp; not overly smooth, but not overly harsh. New Amsterdam doesn’t make a great martini because its front-end is just too darn bitter for sipping. New Amsterdam Vodka, I project, would make a very good mixer with any type of juice or sweetener because it is too light in flavor to overpower anything that you put in it. Cranberry juice would very easily mask its bitter front end. I also think that New Amsterdam Vodka would make a very good Cosmo when used with Leopold Bros Cranberry Liquer.

New Amsterdam Vodka Rating: 73

  • As a Martini: 68
  • As Shots: 72
  • As Mixer: 78
  • As a Cheap Vodka: 74

Vikingfjord Vodka

Vikingfjord Vodka
Vikingfjord Vodka Review

With my recent purchase of Vikingfjord Vodka, my local liquor store trip through the Scandinavian countries is nearly complete. There’s one from Iceland called, Reyka Vodka that is said to be pretty darn good.  Before I bought the Vikingfjord I wasn’t really intending to get another Vodka from this region of the world, but the $12.99 price tag for 1.75L bottle caught my eye. I’m always looking for cheap bargains and the Vikingfjord had a $3.00 rebate ribbon wrapped around its cheap $12.99 price tag so I couldn’t resist. Unlike the others; Svedka, Fris and Finlandia, Vikingfjord is made from Potato instead of grain. I’m really beginning to wonder if the ingredients make that much of a difference. In the final analysis of vodka, it’s the smoothness and purity that most of us seem to be looking for. So, how smooth, clean and refreshing is Vikingfjord?

My first sniff of Vikingfjord revealed an aroma that would suggest somewhat plastic-like, bitter tasting Vodka similar to other cheap brands like Taaka. Surprisingly, my first taste disagreed with my unkind impression of its odor. The Vikingfjord greeted the front part of my mouth and tip of my tongue with a promisingly clean, sweet and refreshing flavor. I stopped for a moment and let the flavor finish its journey down my mouth and throat. Unfortunately, the pleasant part of its journey ended somewhere between the middle and back of my tongue and throat. What was once a pleasant greeting turned into a bitter after-taste that lingered near the back of my throat like an unwanted guest. My hopes for a $12.99 bargain bottle of vodka were dashed. On the other hand, as proven in my Dirty Martini and Taaka Vodka reviews, even cheap vodka has a purpose. Fruit Juice or Cool-Aid mixers are not going to be enough to completely mask the bitterness of Vikingfjord, but they will make it more tolerable. A better purpose is a dirty martini. I poured about 3 ounces of the Vikingfjord and a dash of vermouth into a stainless steel shaker of ice. I violently shook the mixture until the stainless steel shaker was so cold I could no longer hold it. (This is the way you finish the filtering process of an impure tasting vodka.) I finished off the ritual by putting a couple of olives and a teaspoon of olive juice  and Vikingfjord vodka into a chilled martini glass. I was impressed with how well the bitterness had mellowed with the olive juice, vermouth and shaking process. It didn’t make a half-bad martini. I would rate a Vikingfjord Vodka martini a notch or two above one that is made with Taaka. On the other hand, the Vikingfjord is a good two notched blow the other three Vodkas from the Scandinavian Region.

Vikingfjord and Scandinavian Vodka Ratings

  • Svedka Vodka : 93
  • Fris Vodka: 87
  • Finlandia Vodka: 85
  • Vikingfjord Vodka: 72