A well made craft vodka at a refreshingly modest price for what you get.
Honeoye Falls Distillery is one of the newer distilleries in the Rochester and Finger Lakes area. Located about 30 minutes south of Rochester it is nestled in the hill and drumlins of the Finger Lakes area and draws its water from the nearby Finger Lakes of Canadice and Hemlock Lakes ( both of whom are water supplies also for the city of Rochester and known for the taste ad purity of their water.They use a second generation ( as I call it as significant improvements have been made over the first models) Artisan Still Works stainless steel steam fired still with a column and copper inserts.They make a unaged rye spirit called Lantern Light Rye Moonshine, A gin called Devils Bathtub Gin, a aged rye by the name of Red Saw Rye and an extremely limited release Bourbon along with this their Frozen Falls Vodka.
Notes: The vodka is made from 85% very locally grown rye and 15% of the mash bill is a 6 row malted barley from Pioneer Malting, our local Maltster.
Appearance: Clear as the proverbial bell, on swirling it coats the glass nicely with a thin slightly oily coat then very rapidly retreats to leave a large numbers of tiny droplets in a constellation in your glass
First Impression: Relatively light bouquet of grain with the distinctive, slightly peppery, sweet sour notes of rye with a nice backbone of alcohol that is well-integrated into the bouquet ( read it does not burn your nose or have off notes).
Taste: A good slightly oily entry from the grain coats the tongue and is followed by a push of sweet and sour, Szechuan pepper like flavor notes ending with a gentle warming and slightly mineral like fade. Nicely constructed and integrated taste profile , it is not one of those overly sweet and flabby vodkas, but has a nice structure to it.
Drinks: Works well in any cocktail calling for vodka, and unlike many offers a nice structure to the drink and contributes nicely to a cocktail, this is not just an ethanol delivery vehicle of a vodka,
Bottle: the clear glass bottle, is very reminiscent of an early gin bottle, if a rather stretched out version with sharp slab sides and rounded shoulders, with thankfully a longer neck then found on the gin bottles allowing for much better grip. Both labels are plastic appliqué, The front one being mostly clear and the back one having a reverse photo showing the frozen falls it is named after showing through the front from front to back and on the backside is the story of the distillery itself and their web link. The bottle is finished with a black plastic neck capsule with a tear strip making it refreshingly easy to remove, unlike some, and a synthetic rubber cork with a ring top, again making it easier to open than number bottles. Art and practicality seem to be well married in this package
Other: If it was a couple of dollars less it would have had a 9 in the value/price rating.
Final Thoughts: A well made rye based vodka that is made from local New York State ingredients. I would stack it up against virtually every other rye vodka I can think of in terms of quality, and it is even cheaper than many of the big boys vodkas.
Beats the Avian Fashion Victim Vodka hand down ( which is made from wheat , yes, I know- but this has better flavor because of the rye )
A well laid out and fast loading site with easy navigation and a fair amount of information. It needs updating in a few places but is a well done site overall if a bit minimal compared to some.