Russia

Russia

Beluga Noble Winter

What does it mean when you don’t pay attention in a statement about paying attention?

Ever since trying Beluga for the first time while I was in Russia in the summer of 2010, I have been a fan. But you can only drink so much of this stuff, especially since it’s pretty expensive. So every now and then I keep an eye open for…

Russia

Beluga Celebration

Will Beluga Celebration be better than the original?

This being Beluga, and not just that, but Beluga Celebration, my expectations were high. And I didn’t feel disappointed. Beluga Celebration has only a very faint smell, which is always a good sign. If the stuff smells like some kind of…

Belenkaya Luxe vodka
Russia

Belenkaya Luxe

Is this one just de luxe in name or is it really that good?

Behold! This one is called Беленькая Люкс – Belenkaya Luxe vodka, and it is not from Kyrgyzstan, even though I bought it there. No, it is from Russia! I was in Cholpon-Ata when I tried it, a beach resort on the northern shore of Issyk-kul. It was a few weeks after that tumultuous night of Jeti Oguz, the hangover had passed, and I had kept myself busy doing other things besides…

Legend Of Kremlin vodka
Russia

Legend Of Kremlin

If there is a legend about the Kremlin, can we really expect to find it in a bottle of vodka?

This one is a premium brand like so many others. And like so many others it boasts a long tradition and some of the closest ties to Czar’s Family. There is apparently even…

Shtoffka vodka
Russia

Shtoffka

Is this brand name hilarious, or is it just further proof that humor doesn’t improve from drinking?

You know how sometimes you get an idea stuck in your head, a totally random idea, and you just can’t get rid of it? To me, it was the idea that…

Ogni Kremlya vodka
Russia

Ogni Kremlya

Is there anything reasonable I can say about this vodka after a long drunken night?

First of all, I have to apologize to the good people at Ogni Kremlya, because this review is probably not going to do them much justice. I usually try not to…

Russian Garant Horseradish vodka
Russia

Russian Garant Horseradish

Is it a good idea to be infusing vodka with horseradish, or is it an insult to the senses?

Does the thought of mixing horseradish with vodka sound horrible to you? Well, it didn’t to me. Not before I tried it. I thought: well, I have

Rublëvka vodka
Russia

Rublëvka

If there is nothing particular to be said about a certain vodka, is that a good thing or a bad thing?

There is little to be said about this one, at least from me. It was the same scenario as usual: a group of friends, something to…

Kalinovaya vodka
Russia

Kalinovaya

Is this the prettiest bottle design ever, and what do rowan berries really taste like?

I got this from a store on-line, and to be honest, I decided to buy it because the price seemed reasonable (ca. 13€/700ml: 8/10). I didn’t pay much…

Stolichnaya Elit vodka
Russia

Stolichnaya Elit

Is this one of those luxury editions that are not much better than the originals?

There has to be something special for you to celebrate if you are going to drink a vodka like this. At least that’s the way it is for me. I would always rather…

Etalon vodka
Russia

Etalon

Where is this stuff really from, and if we don’t know where it is from, do we even care?

The first thing I noticed about this vodka was obviously the shape and color of its bottle. It had the feel of something traditional. I tried to find out…

Rusitsa vodka
Russia

Rusitsa

What’s wrong with this cork cap and how important is it to attach a picture of a random hot chick to a vodka bottle?

I got this – once again – from the never ending reservoir of the little Russian shop around the corner. They seem to be always getting new…

Czar’s Gold vodka
Russia

Czar’s Gold

Was giving this vodka an imperial name a mistake, or was it smart marketing for an excellent product?

Almost every time I go to the little Russian shop around the corner to buy vodka, I ask them: “Do you have that Czar-vodka? And they never seem to…

Russkaya Ruletka vodka
Russia

Russkaya Ruletka

Is there a reason to try Russian Roulette, or should we just stick to our guns and drink other stuff?

I found this in a huge grocery store in Munich. And with huge I mean huge, like you couldn’t even find your way out unless you…

Baykal vodka
Russia

Baykal

Is this the vodka brand with the best advertisement campaign ever, or do they need to put a tiger in there somewhere?

Here’s what you have to do: google the name Байкал Водка. Trust me! Not only does it have a cool design that resembles a deep, deep lake (well, the Baykal Lake, duh!), but there is also a…

Vysota Luxe vodka
Russia

Vysota Luxe

Why is this vodka called deluxe, and why is it not enough to just have a product that is decent?

I got this in the Russian store around the corner. I just pointed at it in the shelf and bought it. There was no use…

Stolichnaya vodka
Russia

Stolichnaya

Can this classic vodka live up to its name, and by the way: what is its name anyway?

I stayed in and had some of that good Stolichnaya today: a Russian brand that seems to be mainly targeted at foreign markets. The guys on…

Five Lakes vodka
Russia

Five Lakes

When you drink this, will you feel the freshness of Siberian lakes or just the percentage of alcohol?

Like I said before, every vodka needs a certain angle to reach its customers. This one is marketing itself as being cool and fresh from a…

Kedrovitsa vodka
Russia

Kedrovitsa

What do pine trees really taste like and why did I fail to notice them in this vodka?

Actually, I didn’t even notice the note about the pine tree flavoring until I had already finished most of the stuff. I started…

Dvojnaya Belaya vodka
Russia

Dvojnaya Belaya

If this is so good, then why do the people who sell it not drink it themselves?

I got this at the Russian store around the corner. It (the store) is called “Russian Standard”, and it has all kinds of…

Hlebnaya vodka
Russia

Hlebnaya

Is there anything to be learned from drinking, and what does bread have to do with vodka?

It had been a pretty good day: First I managed to get some books from the library, then I wrote more words in two hours than I had written the day before that. After that I had dinner with…

Russian Standard vodka
Russia

Russian Standard

Does a vodka brand have to be old and established in order to be truly great?

In fact this vodka was the reason why I started this blog in the first place: one night I was hanging out in some friends’ kitchen having a bottle of Russian Standard with them. In walks another dude and…

Green Mark vodka
Russia

Green Mark

Is this just another washed up legend, or can it still live up to old expectations?

It is one of the most popular brands in Russia. It is affordable, reliable, and you can find it virtually everywhere. I have talked to quite a few Russians who told me that…

Russian Standard Platinum vodka
Russia

Russian Standard Platinum

Can a bit of Platinum make any difference, and is it worth the extra money?

It seems as though every decent vodka brand needs to have at least one “luxury” offspring. Think of it like Toyota and Lexus: here is a big brand that…

Kauffman vodka
Russia

Kauffman

Is the hefty price tag on this vodka brand really justified, or is it just another luxury hype?

There was one thing I particularly liked about it: the name, because it reminded me of Konstantin von Kaufman (Константин фон-Кауфман), the first Governor-General of Russian Turkestan in the 19th century. Still, after all…

Beluga vodka
Russia

Beluga

This one is called Beluga vodka. And it’s one of the finest brands you can find in the whole of Russia. One of the best

Imperia vodka
Russia

Imperia

Is this what happens when you try to come up with something even more awesome than the original?

I am a great fan of Russian Standard, in fact that was the first vodka that I really liked. So when I found out that…

Parliament vodka
Russia

Parliament

Does filtering with milk make any difference, and what is so awesome about this brand name?

Isn’t it funny how vodka brands are often trying to sell a certain image? It’s as if the stuff itself just wasn’t…

Imperial Collection vodka
Russia

Imperial Collection

Is this true deluxe or is it just another regular ass vodka with a nice name on the label?

If you’re like me, you are wondering about the name of this vodka right now. Isn’t anything that has a word like “imperial” in it either…

Tigroff Ginseng vodka
Russia

Tigroff Ginseng

What does ginseng aroma have to do in an all-black bottle with tiger scratch marks?

I remember riding a bus through Vladivostok one day. There was this big guy sitting next to me, and I asked him…

Spasskaya Dal’ vodka
Russia

Spasskaya Dal’

Is this vodka too good to be cooled before consumption?

I didn’t cool this. I had it at room temperature, with some nice Russian pickles and some bread and some clear water as a chaser. Like a…

Kalashnikov vodka
Russia

Kalashnikov

Is it cool to drink an assault rifle, and who has this vodka brand been made for?

I am not a great fan of the arms industry as a whole, but this bottle with the name Kalashnikov was just too beautiful and too intriguing for me…

Georgievskaya Birch vodka
Russia

Georgievskaya Birch

What does a birch tree really taste like, and why do people put it in their drinks?

We are looking at a tree-flavored edition. When they say birch, are they talking about the wood, the pollen, the leaves or the bark? I am wondering about this, and I think it’s intriguing because even though we are all…