Wednesday, April 18, 2007

New Vodka Flavor Hits US

I hate it when I become addicted to something only available overseas.

Like, when I was living in Cataluna (Spain), a tapas bar down the block made the most succulent “croquettas de bacalao” (codfish fritters). When the tapas craze hit the States, I was hopeful but disappointed - not the same. In New Zealand, I got hooked on the $1 meat pies. In Brazil, I slathered their white, creamy catupiry cheese on everything from bread to fruit, daily. And, who would disagree that there is something about the luscious café crèmes in Paris that just don’t compare to any American-made latte.

So, when I was in Finland, in February, covering Finlandia’s 9th Annual International Cocktail Competition, I knew I was in trouble. Their new grapefruit flavored vodka was only available in Europe. Immediately hooked, I savored every sip, knowing I’d have to wait a few months until I could buy it (regularly) back home!

Why do I like it so much? Finnish water is among the purest in the world, so there is no need for multiple filtering at distillation. (In fact, the water is so clean that it is still "living." Even though Finlandia bottles its own brand of water, it can not be exported because of its short shelf life.) So, while Finlandia grapefruit is a great mixer, its also tasty on its own (over ice with a squeeze of lime). The fresh, citrus flavor is not too sweet or fruity but leaves a whisper of grapefruit on the tongue (and left me panting for more)!

The Good News? American Sipsters, I am very happy to tell you that, as of April, Finlandia’s grapefruit flavored vodka is here!

Below are two drinks I came up with while “playing” with my very own bottle! (By the way - these cocktails are still unnamed… if of you Sipsters want to play “Name That Drink” leave a comment or e-me. Winner will be mentioned on TLM.) Kippis!

Cocktail #1:
2 oz. Finlandia Grapefruit
generous squeeze of lime
dash blood orange bitters (I am addicted to Blood Orange bitters, too!)
2 oz. Freshly squeezed blood orange juice
Splash of soda water

Shake vodka, bitters, and juice, with ice. Pour into chilled martini glass. Top with a splash of soda water. Garnish with a lime wheel.

Cocktail #2:
1 1/2 oz. Finlandia Grapefruit
2 oz. Freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
sparkling wine

Sugar-rim a chilled champagne flute, pour in vodka and grapefruit juice. Top with champagne. (Great with brunch, or an evening soiree.)


Anonymous said...

#1 sounds wicked. I would coin it "An Amused Ironic Grape."

claire barrett said...

maybe the first one could be "....Thicker than Water" said...

Cool ideas...

Anonymous said...

I tried your cocktail..quite nice. Had a cocktail party and it was a real hit! this vodka rocks...thanks for the reccomendation :)

ParisienGirl said...

Ohlala..j'adore cette vodka..trop bon! I made cocktail nmber two and used a mix of orange & grapefruit... so good! thanks for introducing me to it!!

RockerMom said...

How about "The Bloody Duchy" for the first one...(The Grand Duchy of Finland was the predecessor state of modern Finland that existed in its territory 1809–1917 as part of the Russian Empire.)

And, how about "Smooth Whooper" for the second...(The Whooper Swan is the national bird of Finland, and is a large Northern Hemisphere swan.)

Amanda said...

This grapefruit vodka is awesome! It's really hard to find in stores. But with some tonic water and cranberry juice it's wonderful, just add a slice of lime and you're good to go!

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