The world of flavored vodkas has expanded greatly over the last few decades and many of our favorite brands are producing some interesting options. From tried and true flavors of citrus and vanilla to fruity favorites like pomegranate and cherry and the many whipped cream vodkas, there is definitely a lot of fun to be found in vodka.
Whether you're looking for a fun way to spice up your favorite drinks or looking to explore new flavor options, there's sure to be a vodka out there for you.... Let's look at some of the best brands, most popular flavors, and a few surprises that you need to know about.
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Our Favorite Flavored Vodka Brands
In today's competitive liquor market, it is rare that a vodka brand does not produce at least a few flavored vodkas. There are exceptions, of course, and many of those can be found in the luxury vodkas that focus on creating a superior clear vodka.
Yet, the majority of vodka companies do offer flavors. Among those are the big names in vodka like Grey Goose, Absolut, and Belvedere. Some brands like Ketel One and Hangar 1 choose to offer just a handful of flavor options while the likes of Van Gogh and Stoli have a portfolio of a dozen or more flavors.
Any of the flavored vodkas from any of these companies are great for cocktails. If you're loyal to a brand or two, you should have no problems finding a premium vodka in the flavor you're looking for.
Should you be looking for a budget-friendly vodka, you will have no difficulty either. New Amsterdam and Deep Eddy are two of the best and, though their selections are small, they offer some amazing fruit-infused vodkas.
This category also includes brands like Smirnoff and Pinnacle. Both brands are constantly updating their flavor offerings and are available in almost any liquor store you walk into.
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The Most Popular Flavored Vodkas
Anyone who has watched the vodka market over the last decade or two has noticed big changes. Yet, one thing has remained the same when it comes to navigating all the flavor options: citrus and vanilla vodkas are the most popular.
These were two of the first flavors offered in vodka and they remain at the top of the list for a good reason. They're useful, plain and simple.
Why? You can take almost any vodka cocktail recipe that calls for ordinary vodka, replace it with either citrus or vanilla and it will work. These flavors are versatile and the delicate flavors can enhance drinks of almost any flavor profile, from dry to sweet and fruity to savory.
For instance, a cocktail as simple as the famous Cosmopolitan can be remade with a simple switch to a citrus vodka (this includes lemon and orange vodkas). That's one of the common vodka choices for the recipe, but have you tried a vanilla vodka? The change is subtle but impressive because the citrus liqueur and cranberry are complemented with that subtle sweetness of vanilla.
There are exceptions, of course, but you would be surprised how handy a bottle of citrus or vanilla vodka can be in the bar. You will also be delighted to know that most vodka producers offer one or both of these flavors.
03 of 05
We Do Love Fruity Vodkas
Fruit-flavored vodkas are also quite useful in the bar, some more so than others. Among the most used are cherry, pineapple, and any of the berries (including blueberry, raspberry, and strawberry). These can find their way into some fun cocktails.
- For the cherry, Grey Goose's Cherry Noir is a favorite.
- The pineapple vodka from Van Gogh Vodka is a very nice choice.
- Stoli's Blueberi, Strasberi, and Razberi, along with the berry offerings from Finlandia and Smirnoff are very useful as well.
You will also want to check out other fruity flavors like apple, mango, melon, and peach. Each of these is available from many vodka brands.
Two trending flavors are pear and pomegranate and either can be mixed into a variety of drinks. For pear, I would recommend Grey Goose La Poire and the best pomegranate vodkas come from Charbay and Pearl.
Other fruity flavors common in vodka are banana, cranberry, grape, grapefruit, and passion fruit. These are not quite as versatile or offered by as many brands, but they are quite fun to play around with.
04 of 05
If you didn't notice the inundation of dessert-flavored vodkas hit the market then you have not been to the liquor store in a few years. These include those cake and whipped cream vodkas that seem to be everywhere.
It all started around 2010 and within a year or two, we saw this trend explode. There have been vodkas replicating almost every imaginable sweet tooth indulgence, including kid's cereals and candies, cinnamon rolls and other baked goods, as well as a variety of cakes, pies, and frostings.
This was led by brands like Pinnacle, who definitely takes the cake on sweet vodkas with a flavored portfolio that has topped over 40 different offerings. Big names like Three Olives, Van Gogh, and UV got into the dessert game as well and we saw specialty brands like Cupcake Vodka pop up.
While it was very hot for a few years and some of us thought the madness would never end, it has slowed down. That is not to say that these are bad vodkas because they are fun, the trend just seemed to get a little too wild for a while.
Now, that is not to discount the ultimate (and dare we say, original) sweet vodka, chocolate. It is still not the most versatile vodka on the shelf, but it's hard to resist the delicious chocolate vodkas from Van Gogh, Stoli, and Three Olives.Continue to 5 of 5 below.
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Surprising Flavored Vodkas You Should Know
Within the flavored vodka market are some surprising finds. These are flavors that may not be the first to cross our minds, but they can be used to create some amazing drinks.
Coconut: New Amsterdam is one brand that makes a fantastic coconut vodka, which can be used in fun cocktails and replace vanilla in some drinks. Ciroc Vodka also makes a brilliant coconut and the Coco Light Martini is one drink that you must try when you get a bottle of coconut.
Cucumber: A few brands have taken on this flavor and it's very refreshing. Enjoy it in light summer cocktails like the Prairie Refresher from Prairie Organic Vodka, drinks with lemonade, or even your average Vodka Tonic.
Espresso: Quite a few vodka brands got on the coffee kick, including Three Olives and Van Gogh. These are fun vodkas that make the Espresso Martini even easier to mix up and they can add a fun jolt to an array of drinks.