Looks like I’m finally getting around to updating the Slower Pulse blog. Feels good. After all, it’s not like I haven’t been drinking. Of course I have, in fact I’ve even been taking notes, and right now there are at least half a dozen vodka brands in the pipeline. I just never got around to typing them up.
Anyway, this one is called Tajikistan, and (of course) it’s from the country of Tajikistan. I got it in Khujand when I was there in June 2017, and I found myself wondering: would it live up to its impressive name?
Tajikistan vodka means good stuff in a terrible bottle
I’m listening to “Paradise Circus” by Massive Attack while I’m typing this. And here’s what my notes say: Tajikistan vodka was super cheap. Around 4€ for 500ml, putting it in the 10/10 category when it comes to price. But then the same goes for most vodka brands from Central Asia. They are affordable as hell. Seems a bit unfair to most other markets. But what can you do?
How fast are you supposed to drink this?
Okay, so about that bottle design: I didn’t like it at all. Sure, there was a sort of “Soviet Charm” to it, and you certainly wouldn’t accuse this brand of looking pretentious, but still, I couldn’t get myself to like it. I mean, at least make sure the label doesn’t come off that easily, and give the bottle a screw cap or a cork or whatever, not just a little flap that you can never close again once you’ve opened it. Or is everyone supposed to finish the whole bottle at once? Hated the bottle design: 2/10.
But then vodka, at its essence, is about two things: taste and aftertaste.
At some point you remove the bottle flap, which is when you learn that Tajikistan vodka’s smell matches its bottle design: it burns the air around it. This is a bad sign. A terrible sign. But sometimes life (vodka) surprises you.
This stuff actually tastes pretty good! It burns on the way down, yes, but not as much as you would think if you’re judging from the initial smell. It’s quite smooth, and it even tastes a bit sweet. A solid 7/10.
And then the aftertaste hits you: the sweetness is still there but it turns into something bigger, something aromatic and rich. Like a forest. Tajikistan vodka goes straight to your core and warms you from inside. A very good aftertaste that goes perfectly with all kinds of hearty appetizers. So good! A 9/10.
All things considered, this vodka does need some polishing when it comes to its bottle design. But the stuff itself is very good.
A highly recommended 7.0