Lucy selflessly samples East Anglia’s newest tipple, Renaissance Vodka. Featuring English rose vodka, martinis and neat spirits, you might get a mild hangover after reading this post.
The vodka was gifted to inNorfolk in return for a review.
I have a soft spot for vodka.
It was the spirit that introduced me to alcohol. Clear and tasteless, it mixed perfectly with orange juice to leave me feeling merry after just one or two drinks.
As the years rolled by, however, I just got distracted by other, more exciting drinks. I started drinking wine and gin and whisky, and poor old vodka got left by the wayside.
But my interest in the clear stuff was recently reignited when I became aware of Renaissance Vodka. Made from East Anglian sugar beet and Yorkshire spring water, Renaissance Vodka goes through a finely tuned single distillation process before being bottled.
And since launching in 2017, the brand’s English Artisan Vodka has won the Global Spirits Master Award and a silver medal at the London Spirits Competition.
So when I was invited to review both their English Artisan Vodka and their new English Rose Vodka, I jumped at the chance.
Before I get into the tasting notes and whatnot, I want to mention the packaging.
The heavy bottles look gorgeous in my drinks cabinet, and the labels feature illustrative details showing the ingredients and distilling process.
Both have a wax-sealed cap too, which is a small detail, but it looks really special. Admittedly, I struggled to cut through it without stabbing myself (I’m v. clumsy), but it looks is delightful.
Renaissance Vodka – English Artisan Vodka: 40% ABV
In many respects, it’s quite difficult to describe vodka; it’s clear and doesn’t taste of much. Ever the professional, however, I poured myself a shot before making cocktails.
The aroma is as you’d expect; clean, crisp – almost medicinal – alcohol. But the flavour is surprisingly complex.
Taking a sip, you initially get the gentle burn of alcohol, which mellows into an almost floral after taste. I will admit that I was surprised by this revelation.
After savouring a couple more sips, I made an ice-cold martini, combining the vodka with a few dashes of vermouth. I love a martini and this was divine; smooth and easy-to-drink, this might be my new favourite cocktail.
Renaissance English Rose Vodka: 40% ABV
I was very excited about the prospect of opening this vodka.
It’s a cute shade of baby pink in the bottle and has a coordinating wax seal; it’s very Elle Woods.
This version of the sugar beet vodka has been distilled with hand-cut roses, which were harvested at a country house in Cambridge.
Upon opening the bottle, you’re hit with the powerful aroma of roses, which fills the room.
And the flavour is perfect.
Sampling some neat, you do get alcohol burn, but it’s tempered by the Turkish-delight flavour of the roses. You could probably enjoy it as a short over ice, but my preference is for a rose martini. Ice cold and served with vermouth, it’s a fun twist on the classic cocktail.
Needless to say, I had to have a little lie down before writing this blog, but Renaissance Vodka has rekindled my love of vodka. It makes a great gift for the cocktail lover in your life.
Now, if you don’t mind, I’m going back to bed…