Vodka, With Flavor. Not Flavored Vodka.

Tasting Notes: Reyka Vodka

In the world of vodka, there’s more parity than any other spirit category, and there’s seemingly a new vodka on the market each week. Given the competition, most resort to lifestyle claims for differentiation tactics – and to justify steep prices – rather than focusing on what’s in the bottle. Bucking that trend is Reyka Vodka ($18), a small batch product from Iceland, which recently won top honors amongst vodkas at the International Wine and Spirits Competition.

Reyka Vodka is produced with a Carter Head still, one of only six in the world, and the only one used for vodka production. The spirit is distilled from wheat and barley, filtered through ancient lava rocks and blended with arctic spring water for a clean, pure vodka that’s uniquely Icelandic. Surely Vikings drank similar stuff.

The vodka has aromas of freshly cut grains and mild vanilla. Take a sip to find soft flavors of grain, fruit and spice, plus an oily mouthfeel that coats your palate with a lush and warming tingle. It finishes dry, with a lingering pepper.

We’re personally not “Wódka” guys, but this is good stuff at a wallet-friendly price.

Buy now: $18