Vodka Flavored - Jewel of Russia Berry
Jewel of Russia Berry
Chernogolovka Distillery Ost - Alco,Russia
PROOF: 44 (22%)
TYPE: Flavored, Russian, Wheat Rye
PRICE: $35.00 1 Liter (not 750 ml)
Notes: Unlike a number of vodka distillers they use a blend of hard winter wheat and rye using water drawn from deep artesian wells (over 500 ft.). It is distilled 5 times, then filtered 5 times, each using the usual Russian method of paper, sand, then finally through specially-modified charcoal made from the stones of peaches and apricots, a special technique of the Chernogolovka distillery.
Produced at a new distillery founded in 1995, and given the "luxe" (type 3) designation of the highest grade of vodka by their government. This is the cranberry infused version of their vodka (the other versions being the Classic, Bilberry Infused and Ultra).
The berries are picked and infused the same day they are picked for a period of 28 days to ensure maximum extraction of flavor. Unlike a flavored vodka an infused vodka gets a lot more juice and flavors (and uses real materials) than a flavored vodka - which many times use a flavoring made in a chemical tank than in nature.
Appearance: Clear, no sediment whatsoever. On swirling, it leaves a a thicker clear coat on the inside of the glass and almost seems a bit viscous. Nice deep red color that is not the result of adding some red dye - a refreshing change from the usual!
First Impression: Fruity,slightly acidic, very true cranberry smells.
Taste: Sweet entry, very slight warming of alcohol as it goes down the throat, and a acidic/astringent finish from the cranberries. Nice firm mineral taste to the water component. Slightly woody taste that may be useful for cocktails- not sure how to use it but unusual and useful at the same time.
Drinks: Makes for a very nice Cosmo. Could also be quite the addition to a punch or glog. Also could be used instead of Maraschino or Kirsch for a twist on a recipe calling for either.
Final Thoughts: A very nice infusion of cranberry and vodka and a very worthy bottle for any mixologist's bar. Flavor is excellent and the outstanding vodka base is a plus. It is very rare to find an infused vodka out there - flavored ones abound but are pale imitations. This one is definitely worth hunting down.
Bottle: The design goes back about 300 years to the Czars as a classic vodka bottle. Clear glass rectangular with rounded shoulders. Imperial Russian eagle is embossed at each corner of shoulder. Red and gold label inside inset area of bottle. Neck is sealed with red sealing wax- enough to be pretty but thin enough you don't need sharp objects to get through it (our pet peeve with some spirits).
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