AT A GLANCE
Brand Owner: Diageo
Distilled by: Nolet Distillery in Schiedam, the Netherlands
Still Type: Column & Pot Stills
Spirit Type: Vodka - Neutral Character
Strength: 40% ABV
Made at the Nolet Distillery Schiedam, the Netherlands, Ketel One Vodka was first sold in 1984. The Nolet family has been making spirits in the Netherlands since 1691, when Joanness Nolet built his distillery out side Rotterdam. In 1902, the Nolet family built a second distillery in Baltimore, Maryland however, their American expansion was short lived when the distillery was forced to close due to US Prohibition. In the early 1980s, Carolus Nolet explored the US cocktail scene and witness vodka's dominance first hand. Believing his family could make a superior product, Carolus returned to the Netherlands and formulated Ketal One. The Vodka starts with a fermented mash 100% European-grown Winter Wheat, which is then column distilled to 96% ABV. Then a portion of this high proof wheat spirit is re-distilled in ten pot stills, and the center heats cuts are individually filtered and blended together. Then a portion of the column distillate and the pot still distillates are blended together and proofed to create Ketel One Vodka.
Nose: The nose has a nice round and clean aroma of slate and wet stone with just a hint of alcohol at the back.
Palate: The palate has a very round and smooth body that simultaneously gives the impression of sweetness and spice like cinnamon or rye bread.
Finish: The finish is slightly warm and clean. Flavors of slate with just a hint of lime zest linger on the palate and then ends with a slightly fruity note reminiscent of green table grapes.
Conclusion: While I am not a frequent vodka drinker, this is a good example of a well made large volume vodka that has a good body and clarity. It’s slight sweetness and spice will work well with a variety of mixers and will please drinkers out of the freezer or if you are using in cocktails like the Bloody Mary or vodka soda.