Interesting if slightly odd melange of flavor.
Notes: This Vodka is produced in England and is distilled five times.
Appearance: Attractive thick body to it, clear, no sediment whatsoever. On swirling, it leaves a thin but tenacious clear coat on the inside of the glass, then suddenly turns into droplets.
First Impression: Mandarin with a sharpness to it at first, the tangerine starts up just behind it. On deeper inhalation you just pick up hints of the alcohol cutting through the citrus but not much.
Taste: As advertised it is a interesting blend of Mandarin Oranges and Tangerines , and I suspect a touch of glycerin to thicken the body and take the edges off (in much the same way some whisky blends use caramel). It is oily and tart on the tongue a bit like a sweet tart candy. The alcohol leaves warmth at the middle and back of the tongue. A very slight warming of alcohol as it goes down the throat, with the citrus oils clinging for a bit along with the tart/bitter taste at the center/front of the tongue, leaving a tingling tease.
Drinks: An interesting vodka, but as with any flavored vodka it limits what you can do with it to the realm of specialty drinks. However given the large number of drinks requiring orange in some form (as juice or in a orange liquor such as Cointreau or Grand Marnier) and its overall flavor it seems sufficently versatile. We tried a number of the drinks they suggestted and they seemed to work well.
Check their web site http://www.playersextreme.com for more ideas.
Cigars: Mild- to medium-bodied cigars, cuts the nicotine well and compliment each other.
Final Thoughts: While I have said subtlety is not something you can accuse Players Extreme Vodkas of, this vodka is in fact milder than Orange V which has a much heavier orange flqavor that causes a gut love it or hate it reaction. Hanger One Mandarin on the other hand, is much more ethereal. Thiss is a pleasant midrange vodka that will stand up to mixing in a lot of drinks and would be a good addition to any bar that wants a orange flavored vodka or orange flavored spirit to use instead of the usual choices.
With the sea of flavored vodkas I think that they should REALLY think about 50 ml samplers (or sets of them) so people can try their vodkas before committing money to a large bottle of theirs or anyone else as there is such a wide range of expression of a particular flavor.
Bottle: Tall cylindrical frosted bottle like so many other vodkas these days- easily lost in the forest of vodkas at your local store.
Web site:: http://www.playersextreme.com
Fast loading fair amount of information. Simple navigation, good contentand descriptions of products. Recipe section with good martini mixing tips at the start.