Several months ago, I finally got to visit Bend Distillery with my husband and my best friend. We had a great time, as I knew we would (definitely worth stopping by if you are in the Bend area). Since then, I have been racking my brain trying to figure out the perfect drink using one of their Crater Lake Vodkas for our Drink of the Month (yes, I know I am behind on that!). While there are many, many delicious concoctions that one could come up with using these delightful vodkas, I have come to the conclusion that the very best way to drink them is chilled and straight up!
I grew up in a time when vodka was vodka-flavored, so sometimes all of these choices are overwhelming. Vodka was a great mixer because it really didn’t have much of a strong taste on its own. But now, there is just about every flavor imaginable. Most however, taste like vodka with flavor added. Some are really good. Some are not. But I haven’t found one yet that can touch the Crater Lake series for amazing flavor. Crater Lake Vodkas taste like the essence of the infusion. The Espresso Hazelnut doesn’t taste like vodka with coffee–it tastes like an amazing Hazelnut Espresso with a kick. The Sweet Ginger is to die for if you like ginger in any form (as I do!). I think it tastes like pure Aloha. It tastes great with all kinds of mixers. It tastes better poured ice-cold into our surf board shot glass. I should add that I have never been a fan of straight shots. Now I am!
The only ones I would mix are the pepper vodkas, but that’s just because I am a wimp when it comes to peppers. Not my husband and daughter! Just like the other vodkas, the peppers in these hit you right off the bat. Fantastic in a Bloody Mary (which I also don’t care for, unless you use Crater Lake Vodka!). Surprisingly good mixed with grapefruit juice (who would have thought???). If you like spicy, lovely on its own–again chilled and in a south-of-the-border style shot glass.
Here’s a little bonus if you fly Alaska Airlines–they serve the Espresso Hazelnut on their flights! In fact, that is where I first heard of Crater Lake Vodkas. So happy I did!!!