The Lemon Drop was one of the most popular cocktails in the US in the later part of the 20th century. It should follow a simple formula of spirit, lemon, and sweetener, but sadly, in many bars the drink disintegrated … Continue reading
Vodka is a neutral grain spirit that can be distilled from any starch or sugar rich product. There are the usual suspects like grain and potatoes which probably make up the largest share of the market. Then there are rarities like Comb Vodka which is distilled from honey. Pau Vodka is another addition to the unusual side by being distilled from pineapple.
The packaging is beautiful and engaging with a hefty bottle that will look great on the back bar with purple and gold accents. It is distilled in glass stills, which the distillers claim impart no additional flavors to the vodka before being cut with Hawaiian spring water and bottled. In fact the distiller made the glass stills himself.
On the nose it has a slight sweet note with a barely a trace of ethanol. In fact it is quite unremarkable and doesn’t smell like much of anything.
Pau Vodka is smooth but lacks substantial character and has a slight burn that betrays it’s presence on the way down.
Overall while a solid product, I was slightly disappointed in the final result. I was hoping for some of the pineapple essence to seep through if only subtly as a minor background note. I actually like vodka where the character of the distillate is present like with Comb Vodka.
I offer this simple take on a Moscow Mule adding some fresh pineapple to the mix which complements the zing of the ginger.
2 oz Vodka (Pau Vodka)
1/2 oz Lime Juice
5 oz Ginger Beer
4 1/2 inch cubes of fresh pineapple
Combine the vodka, lime juice, spent lime shell, and pineapple chunks in a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice, shake, and strain into a glass filled with ice. Top with ginger beer, give a light stir, and garnish with a lime wheel.
Review sample provided by representatives of Pau Vodka.
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The Harvey Wallbanger is not a terrible drink, but it lacks complexity, and the nuances of the Galliano are totally drowned out by the OJ. I wanted my updated version to highlight the Galliano and make it stand out the … Continue reading
44° North Huckleberry Vodka is produced by the 44° North Distillery in Idaho. According to their website, it is the first vodka approved to wear the Idaho Potato Commission’s official seal. It is distilled from 100% Idaho potatoes, blended with sweet Rocky Mountain water, and infused with mountain huckleberries.
It is sweet and fruity on the nose with a rich berry smell. It doesn’t smell artificial, in fact it has a fresh and natural smell that entices you to take a sip. The natural smell carries through on the taste filling your mouth with a burst of berry flavor. It is silky smooth and well balanced, finishing with a warming sensation rather than a harsh burn.
It is on par if not better than some of the other flavored vodkas available from many of the major and more well known distillers.
I used the Royal Toast as my inspiration for the drink below.
1.5 oz 44° North Huckleberry Vodka
1 oz Lillet Blanc
.5 oz Cherry Brandy (Cherry Brandy)
1 dash of Orange Bitters
stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass
The rich cherry brandy and light berry flavor of the vodka are balanced out by the complexity of the Lillet Blanc. The vodka also adds an alcoholic punch that helps to open up the other flavors and bring out the nuances of the Lillet.
The 2nd drink is called:
2 oz 44° North Huckleberry Vodka
.5 oz – .75 oz Coffee Liqueur (depends on the strength of your liqueur. the stronger the coffee flavor the less you need.)
1 tsp of lemon juice
shake and strain into an ice filled rocks glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.
This one tastes just as you would imagine. It has a strong coffee flavor with a fruity background provided by the vodka. The lemon juice helps to brighten and lighten both of the stronger flavors and bridge the gap between them. Try this in place of your next black or white russian and let me know what you think.