Finally, the last one of the four Kazakh vodkas I was going to try on my free day in Almaty. I had liked Khaoma Original, and I had hated Kristall White, while Argali had turned out to be just mediocre. Now it was time for this stuff called Kabarga (Кабарга).
Would it be good, bad, or neither?
Cute animals can’t save Kabarga vodka
There’s a deer-like animal on the label, and indeed, Wikipedia says that Kabarga means Siberian musk deer, which is a hilarious (albeit tragically endangered) deer with long fangs, not unlike those of a saber-tooth cat. Apparently, some of these Kabargas live in the northeastern corner of Kazakhstan, where the Altai stretches across Russia, China, Mongolia, and Kazakhstan. On the bottle it also says Таежная, which means “from the Taiga”. And under that it says (in English) “100% Organic Vodka For Export”.
Rare and organic or not, this vodka was of course just as affordable as all the others. I got a half liter for 1244 Tenge, which puts it at about 5€/700ml. This means we have another easy 10/10, which makes me think that maybe I ought to reconsider the rating system that I’m applying here.
But anyway, let’s talk about some of the more important things: design, taste, aftertaste.
I thought the bottle looked okay. There was a certain esoteric flair to it that reminded me of Samaani vodka from Finland. I’d give it a 5/10.
It had a smell like a punch to the face. This is usually a very bad sign. But the taste was actually quite alright, there was even a hint of sweetness in it, and it was semi-smooth in the throat. A 7/10.
Here comes the bad part, though: the aftertaste. Sure, it gives you that nice vodka-in-my-tummy feeling that is so warm and comforting, but it’s not very aromatic at all, it just burns! A 4/10.
Again, this one is a mediocre vodka and a 6.5.