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Khortytsa Platinum Vodka

Review:  Khortytsa Platinum Vodka   84/100
A review by Chip Dykstra (Aka Arctic Wolf)
(Revised January 20, 2014)

The Khortytsa Distillery is located in the City of Zaporizhzhia,in the south of Ukraine. The facility is relatively new, its first distilled products were rolled out in December of 2003. According to the company website, the distillery uses only high quality grain spirits produced by Ukraine’s best factories for vodka manufacturing. Although the facility and the brand are relatively new, they have made a significant impact in the global market where today, Khortytsa is found in 85 countries worldwide.

The Khortytsa Brand was recently introduced into Canada, and I was recently asked by the local importer, Ukrainian Drinks Ltd. to provide a few reviews of some of their selected products. The first of these products which I sampled is the Khortytsa Platinum Vodka whose formulation was apparently developed using a special silver and platinum filtration technology.

Here is a video I found online about Khortytsa Platinum Vodka:

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The First Impression 9/10

The Khortytsa Platinum arrives in the nifty clear rectangular bottle shown to the left. The ribbed glass on the sides is functional as the ribbed glass actually helps you grip the bottle if it happens to be damp (as vodka bottles often are after they are taken from the freezer). The overall look of the bottle and the labeling is clean and professional.

An interesting feature of the bottle is the closure which rather than twisting off as you would expect, instead houses a pouring spout which extends out of the top as you turn it. The unique spout is part of the Company’s anti counterfeiting program which also includes matching serial number identification inscribed on each the bottle and the screw cap. The cap also has the bottling date for each bottle produced inscribed above the serial number.

Taking a Sip  17/20

I sampled the Platinum Vodka with three friends. As usual I had chilled the spirit in my freezer to a temperature of about 2 degrees Celsius. The vodka is slightly thickened and creamy at the cold temperature and displays a very clean nose with a bit of spicy grain, and a touch of citrus.

The first sip reinforced the nose with the spiciness of grain evident and a firm but mild citrus flavour. A lightly bitter taste was present which reminded me of spruce bark and thyme. Despite this light bitterness, the vodka appears smooth and easy to sip. It is up to the individual sampling the Vodka whether that light bitter taste is appealing or not.

Taking a Shot   16.5/20

The first full swallow (shot) was pleasant. The Vodka seems smooth with very little burn. There is some spiciness which cleans the palate in a good way, and the flavours of lemon and lime citrus have increased as has the impression of the mildly bitter flavours of bark and thyme. In addition, I also receive light impressions of fresh wheat grain and caraway. At very cold serving temperatures the Vodka is quite pleasant.

I also sampled the vodka at warmer temperatures in subsequent tasting sessions. I noticed some vegetal flavours creeping in. These flavours carry through into the aftertaste which now seems slightly metallic as well as mildly bitter. Since I usually drink my Vodka cold, I am not unduly concerned by this.

Out for Dinner 15.5/20

My friends and I sampled the vodka with food next, some sliced sausage, some cheese and some bread with spinach dip. As I have said before, a good vodka will cleanse the palate between bites, allowing you to have a greater enjoyment of the food paired with the spirit. I should also point out that the vodka itself may also be improved by the experience. In this tasting, the vodka was indeed improving the flavours of the bread, the cheese and the sausage. All of these foods tasted more flavourful after a small swallow of vodka. However, the vodka itself seemed diminished by the experience. In particular, after swallowing a piece of fresh bread, the bitter aftertaste which was barely noticeable earlier in the tasting became aggressive.

Cocktails 26/30

I mixed a Vodka Daiquiri for my friends during the tasting event, and the result was a drink which had a nice tart fruity zing. The Khortytsa Platinum allows the fruit flavour freedom in the cocktail rather than suppressing it. I made a Pink Pussy Cat as well the next day, and I enjoyed how the grapefruit seemed to coexist so well with the vodka. I spent the next few evening exploring cocktails and remained impressed. Whether I mixed a Moscow Mule,  or a my recent new cocktail, the Minted Vodka Daiquiri (see recipe below), I was not disappointed. The Khortytsa Platinum is a fine cocktail Vodka.

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Final Score 84/100 

A Decent Vodka for Sipping

Also Recommended for Fine Cocktails

If you are interested in comparing more scores, here is a link to my other published Vodka Reviews.

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Suggested Recipe

The Minted Vodka Daiquiri

2 oz  Vodka
1 oz  Fresh Lime Juice
1/2 oz Sugar Syrup
1 Mint Leaf
Ice

Add the First four ingredients into a metal shaker with ice
Shake vigorously until the outside of the shaker frosts.
Double Strain (with a fine strainer) into a nice cocktail glass
Garnish (if desired) with a slice of lime or sprig of mint
And of course
Enjoy!
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You may (loosely) interpret my score as follows.

0-25     A spirit with a rating this low would actually kill you.
26-49   Depending upon your fortitude you might actually survive this.
50 -59  You are safe to drink this…but you shouldn’t.
60-69   Substandard swill which you may offer to people you do not want to see again.
70-74    Now we have a fair mixing Vodka.  Accept this but make sure it is mixed into a cocktail.
75-79    You may begin to serve this to friends, again for cocktails only.
80-84    We begin to enjoy this Vodka in shots, although cocktails are preferable.
85-89    Excellent!  Shots or cocktails!
90-94    You may want to hoard this for yourself.
95-97.5 The Cream of the Crop
98+       I haven’t met this bottle yet…but I want to.

Very loosely we may put my scores into terms that you may be familiar with on a Gold, Silver, and  Bronze medal  scale as follows:

70 – 80    Bronze Medal (Recommended only as a mixer)
81 – 89     Silver Medal (Recommended  for shots and mixing cocktails)
90 – 95     Gold Medal (Highly Recommended for Vodka Shots and Sublime Cocktails)
95.5+       Platinum Award (Highest Recommendation)

 
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