Vodka - Napa Valley Vodka
Napa Valley Vodka Vintage 2008
Napa Valley Distillery, Napa, California
Napa Valley Sauvignon Grapes
PROOF: 80 (40%)
AGE: 2 1/2 Years (See below)
TYPE: American, Grape
PRICE: $75.00 - 750 ML
Notes: This vodka is probably one of the most unique vodkas in the world for a number of reasons, or maybe I should say that many facts about it is unique leading to a singularly unique vodka. Made from Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc grapes (at 4-6 x the cost per ton of many other vodka ingredients (unique- we know of only one other Sauvignon based vodka and it is in New York not Napa).
A further unique point is that the wine is aged for 2 years to mellow before being distilled. Made in a Vendome copper pot still (rare- most people use a Christian Karl or Holstein designed still) - and unusual at least, as most commercial vodka is produced in column stills at rectification plants (read chemical factories) in huge refinery like settings and quantities. Really actually distilled 5 times (many vodkas count each plate in a column still as opposed to actually putting it back in the still and doing it again) Filtered 10 times through activated bone charcoal and platinum coated screens (a very rare process which takes about 2 months to complete) then left to age and mellow for a few more months before being bottled in a numbered and signed bottle (again quite rare if not unique).
Another unique point is the vintage declaration- no one else we know of makes a vintage declaration of their vodka. This vodka is produced in small quantities in a extremely labor, material and time intensive process compared to the industrial standards of many other vodkas.
Appearance: Crystal clear, no sediment whatsoever. On swirling, it leaves a thin, clear coat on the inside of the glass with a edgeline developing tears and long legs.
Taste: Sweetish, creamy entry, and slightly oily on the tongue, with a plump, round taste to it. A wonderful, round mouthfeel to it; almost creamy in texture. A slight warming of alcohol as it goes down the throat, with a lovely lingering finish more akin to a Sauvignon Blanc wine than a vodka burn.
Drinks: If you are looking for one of the best vodkas this is it. It works quite well in almost every drink we tried. A superior vodka for mixing if you must mix it.You can however and we recommend, that you can sit and sip glasses of this at room temperature - try that with your vodka. Makes an outstanding Martini (flamed twist please). Use Noilly Prat and keep the vermouth refrigerated for the best taste. Unparalleled smoothness and a lovely taste make it a unique mixer which will make a outstanding cocktail.
Bottle: Distinctive, in that first it comes in a fitted lined box for starters. Inside you find a tall decanter like bottle with minimal but tasteful graphics silk screened or printed directly onto the glass. Nice heft to the bottle and a good grade of clear glass with a weighted bottom to it. NO frosting unlike the sea of others. Simple, robust shape similar to a good liqueur bottle. No nonsense straightforward, shows the vodka to good effect. Topped with a silver colored saucer shaped pull with a faceted bauble and a composite cork. A beautiful presentation piece to give or receive - that happens to contain one of the best vodkas to boot.
Other : Being entirely made from grapes with no, none not any other additives,chemicals, extracts etc., that many other vodkas use to enhance their body, tastes or other characteristics, it is a excellent choice for those with allergies to gluten.
Final Thoughts: In the premium to super premium category of vodka this is one of the few that is worth the money. If you are looking to buy a classic, vintage, flavorful vodka this is the one and only that fits the bill. While it is pricey for a vodka, unlike Grey Goose for which you are paying for a lot of hype and little else, this delivers a wonderful smooth flavor that is singular ,unique and worth the money, because you are getting something special.