really not imperial
This is a review of Callicounis Imperial vodka from Greece. I sampled it in Greece in 2012. It’s clear, 50% alcohol, and I found it revolting.
I found this Callicounis Imperial vodka in a shop on the island of Rhodes – not the one in the United States, but the one in Greece. I went there on vacation after turning in my book manuscripts. And the first thing I did was walk 30km from the airport to a beach town. Until my feet started hurting.
the oldest distillery in Greece
Callicounis Distilleries calls itself the oldest distillery in Greece. Their website goes on and on to make that point:
There’s a bit of company lore, starting with their founding in 1850:
One thing that struck me as odd about the company history was that it stopped in the early 1900s. The company participated in an exhibition in 1900, and after that?
Sadly, I was unable to find our Callicounis Imperial vodka on the site. There was a link for OTHER PRODUCTS, but when I clicked on it, nothing happened:
I ended up looking for it on their e-store:
It was mostly in Greek so I didn’t understand much. Either way I failed to located any trace of Callicounis Imperial vodka. The closest I got was this page where they sold an antiseptic:
But this couldn’t have been Callicounis Imperial vodka, either. And you will soon know why.
Vodka is usually around 40% alcohol, but this one was 50%. The initial reason why I bought was because I had a blister on my foot. I was going to open it with a needle, drain it, and then sterilize it with Callicounis Imperial vodka. At least that was my plan.
The first problem was that I didn’t have a needle. So I used a knife. The second problem was that Callicounis Imperial vodka, albeit being 100 proof, didn’t do a very good job as an antiseptic. And so I suffered for a few days. And I decided to drink what was left of it.
So how was it then? Well, how can I review Callicounis Imperial vodka without starting with the smell. It smelled like rubbing alcohol. And when I drank it, it burned like the hot sun. I mean, it left me gasping for air. It said ULTIMATE TASTE on the label. Ultimate pain is what it should have said. I can’t even tell you anything about the aftertaste. It was just a fleeting cloud in a storm of pain.
Oh, and have I told you that the bottle was made of plastic? The whole thing was a nightmare. But the price was good, in fact, at 8€ for 700ml it was awesome.
Callicounis Imperial vodka is just bad
I can’t really recommend this for anything. Not even for sterilizing purposes.
In hindsight, I regret not keeping the bottle, though. Would have made for a nice souvenir. Or a water bottle.