February 24th, 2007


Caramel Vodka and Its Kin

As I said I would, last night I tried out the caramel vodka. I left it overnight in the freezer, and then let it breathe for a bit. First, I gave it the smell test¹ to make sure there was no harsh, turpentine-like smell which I've observed in previous experiments. It seemed safe for human consumption (which meant that it was certainly safe for me). Then (after shaking), I poured some out into a glass and tasted it. The first thing that hit me was the strong taste of the vodka. That was immediately replaced by the smooth, sweet taste of the caramel, which felt like it was lightly coating my throat on the way down. Then, the vodka returned, with the usual burning sensation that you get after doing a shot of vodka. The burn, however, did not completely overpower the taste of the caramel; so that even though each element hit me separately when the shot went down, the aftertaste I was left with was a mingling of the two. Sweet and creamy, but burning at the same time. Probably would be really good for sipping if you cold.

I've declared this one to be my first success; I believe that opinion was shared by phil_g, the second (and thus far only other) person to give it a try. He thought that it was creamy, and downed the entire glass that I gave him. (I was actually standing ready with some Saint Brendan's Irish Cream to add to it once he'd taken an initial taste, as I had tasted mine both straight and with Irish Cream added. The cordial increased the sweet creaminess while decreasing the burn, which would be good for people not accustomed to drinking their vodka straight and preferring less of a burn.)

As for my previous experiments… as you may recall, the garlic was a mixed bag and the bacon was a definite failure. Last night I finally got around to disposing of the rest of those two samples: most of the bacon vodka was still left over, as only a little had been tasted; but the majority of the garlic vodka was gone. It hadn't worked so well as a drink,² but I had ended up using some of it to marinate some steaks.

As for my other two current experiments (pineapple and banana)… I had planned to open them up and filter out the solids last night (and then toss them in the freezer for testing either today or tomorrow), but I had forgotten that I was out of coffee filters. I need to bring home more before I can test those. I did look at them again last night; some (but not all) of the banana slices have turned a bit brown (the way a banana after a while once you've cut it).

¹The "smell test" involves me trying to smell it first, and then bringing it to someone else (like my wife) who actually has a fully functional sense of smell to get their opinion.
²I did eventually buy some Bloody Mary mix, and Q and I both tried some garlic vodka Bloody Maries. We both agreed that they tasted like shrimp cocktail sauce, and lamented having no shrimp to go with them. Not being Bloody Mary drinkers, we don't know if they were supposed to taste that way; but to us, cocktail sauce is not something one normally drinks. Not our thang.