Oval Vodka Tasting Notes

What attracts you to purchasing a bottle? Is it the label, the colour, the add on’s or the shape? Bottles take many forms these days, with more and more innovative ways to attract attention to the consumer market. Absolut are great at marketing its vodka with different ‘editions’, with Eristoff giving their bottles a winter jacket. Hendrick’s go for their more traditional style of an old medicine style bottle, as does Kamm & Sons, whilst Bombay Sapphire is commonly known as ‘the blue gin’. Even brands from breweries take note on this. Take for example the Old Tom range from Robinson’s brewery. Their 3 strong varieties are housed in short stump bottles compared to one of their latest offerings ‘build a rocket boys’ which is found in your more traditional beer bottle. Or even Estrella Damm and their Inedit – a craft beer served out of a Champagne bottle. These aren’t the only brands who take full advantage of the customers curiosity though. Many vie for the top spot on a back-bar, to stand out amongst its rivals and be the first choice of a patrons tipple.
One of the latest brands to hit the vodka scene has taken a slightly different approach to how its produce is housed. Oval vodka comes in a tetrahedron shape, to correspond with the structure of the liquid inside. Designed by the internationally renowned LUCY. D Design Studio, this Austrian vodka prides itself on the natural evolution of vodka and how the water molecules naturally bond with the alcohol molecules to create a smooth, clean taste and reduce that all important ‘morning after’ effect. Oval creates its vodka by preparing separately the structured, premium-quality alcohol (100% pure wheat) and water which has been purified using osmosis. This process alters the structure of the solutions where the water and the alcohol form a crystalline structure and take on the form of a tetrahedron. The process takes several days before being bottle strength at either 56,42 or 24%.

Some of you may have heard of one of the men behind the bottle – John Paul DeJoria. The US billionaire is one of the co-founders of Patron tequila and alongside his UK partner Jonathon Kendrick, they have created their next step in the drinks industry. So what would you expect from Oval vodka? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes.

Oval – 42%

A fresh, clean nose with subtle hints of wheat drifting through. Instantly smooth on the palate, almost creamy with no traditional ‘vodka burn’ as it makes its way down the throat. Slightly dry at the end but comes with a long tingle finish of herbs.

As mentioned above, Oval comes in three different strengths as well as a Rowan Berry infusion. It is recommended to be drunk straight and not chilled, or even like this –

Oval Pearl Diver

Oval Pearl Diver

Glass –

Highball

Ingredients –

75ml Oval 56
50ml Southern Comfort
25ml Apricot Brandy
Ginger Ale

Method –

Squeeze 1 piece of lime in the glass. fill with ice and stir everything except ginger ale. Fill the glass with ginger ale  and garnish with squeeze of lime.

Oval vodka presents itself in two ways – its bottle shape as well as its production. If your  fan of vodka, give this a try as it can give you a great understanding on how other brands differ with the traditional method of production. I would also recommend to any entry-level non-vodka lovers, due to its smoothness, it can be a great start to a consumer who is unsure on how to enjoy the vodka category.

Check out the rest of the photos, taken at The Circle 360, via my Facebook page.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Blue Gin Tasting Notes

After noticing Blue Gin being promoted in Harrod’s during my last trip to London, I’ve finally been able to add this Austrian spirit to the Drinks Enthusiast gin category.

So how does Blue Gin differ from other brands?

Blue Gin

Using the wheat variety ‘Mulan’, grown from fields in upper Austria, it is distilled twice in a copper pot still in small batches (300 litres) and then supplemented with corn alcohol. 27 botanicals are then added to the blend for maceration which lasts for 2 to 3 days. A third distillation takes place soon after to separate the solid components of the botanicals from the alcohol. The third distillation also concentrates the volatile aromas and the grain alcohol to produce the high-proof preliminary stage of Blue Gin.

The 27 botanicals represent a unique gin flavour of fresh, elegant juniper aroma with fragrant lemon and spice notes. Only the freshest juniper berries from the latest harvest are used, and the spices of lemon rind, angelica root, cilantro seeds, turmeric and liquorice amongst others are sourced from more than ten countries including Egypt, China, Spain, Indonesia, Macedonia, the Netherlands, Romania, Turkey, the USA and Vietnam. The spring water used in Blue Gin comes from an alpine pasture in the Mühlviertel district in the northern province of Upper Austria. The water has very low calcium and sodium content which makes in particularly mild and soft, and enhances the complex flavours of the gin. Uniquely, the spring water and spirit are mixed very gradually over a period of two months, making sure that the balance and unique structure of the gin form slowly and carefully to 43% abv.

So this small batch, hand crafted premium London gin has a certain uniqueness to it, but how does it taste?

 

Blue Gin – 43%

Light with citrus aromas swimming well on the nose although a little dry near the end. A smooth texture on the palate with lots of floral flavours mixing well. Slow hits of liquorice creates a rather long aftertaste. Gives a good surprising kick on the whole.

 

Blue Gin describes itself as ‘the art of luxury gin cocktails’, so below i give to you some classics, and not so classics, to try at home or to ask your bartender.

Blue Gin Negroni

Aviation

Glass

Martini

Ingredients

50ml Blue Gin
20ml Maraschino
20ml fresh lemon juice

Method –

Shake and strain into a Martini glass. Garnish with Maraschino cherry

Negroni

Glass

Rocks glass

Ingredients –

25ml Blue Gin
25ml Carpano Antica Formula
25ml Campari

Method –

Stir in glass with cubed ice. Garnish with slice of orange and lemon

Blue Gin Ginger Imperial

Ginger Imperial

Glass

High-ball

Ingredients

40ml Blue Gin
20ml Midori
1/4 fresh lime
1/2 bar spoon white sugar
3 slices of fresh ginger
Top with Champagne

Method

Build in glass with crushed ice. Garnish with fresh ginger

 

If you fancy getting your hands on a bottle, you can purchase one here. And check out the rest of the photos from my photo shoot at The Circle 360 via my Facebook page.

 

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.