It was only a short time ago that flavored vodkas consisted only of berry and citrus labels. But the times have changed!
Spirit companies have made a splash by flavoring their vodkas in off-the-wall ways—because sometimes, you just want an alcoholic beverage that tastes like a cupcake (or, why not go really crazy and do the liquid version of a bacon cupcake?).
I’ve compiled a list of the 10 strangest varieties of vodka that you can pick up at the local liquor store. If you’re an adventurous drinker, get mixing.
Although it seems odd, are you really surprised that everyone’s favorite breakfast meat has its own vodka flavor? There is bacon-flavored dental floss and bacon beer, so why not bacon-flavored hooch for mixing. Brands like Bakon Vodka are behind this meaty spirit. So add a little pretend protein to your Bloody Mary.
If bacon is the food that inspires the most obsessions, then the cupcake is a close second. To enjoy this sweet treat without the carbs, reach for a bottle of Cupcake Vodka (yep, that’s actually the brand name). If you’re not in the mood for dessert after a shot of their Original flavor, check out other varieties like Frosting, Devil’s Food and Ginger Snap.
3. Bison Grass
A grass-flavored label would make people say “Whaaa?” So brands like Żubrówka decided to flavor their spirit with bison grass. Bison in Eastern Europe (where these labels are made) love to munch on the stuff, and you’ll enjoy the herbal, earthy notes it adds to your drink.
4. Bubble Gum
When Three Olives Vodka launched their Bubble flavor, bubble gum fans everywhere finally got a flavor that would satisfy their sweet tooth and get them tipsy at the same time. I’m not sure who actually falls into that category, but at least you can enjoy gum without the chance of it getting stuck in your hair.
5. Root Beer
6. Green Tea
Green tea is what you drink of when you want to relax and purify your body. Green tea vodka is what you drink when you want to pretend you’re being healthy while enjoying a cocktail or two. Look for brands like Charbay and St. Claire.
7. Smoked Salmon
It’s pretty clear that the folks at the Alaska Distillery had one too many sips of their own product when they decided to release a vodka that tastes like smoked salmon. But hey, it’s one of their most popular flavors! Try it in a Bloody Mary or serve it with capers.
Pickle backs—a shot of Jameson Irish whiskey followed by a shot of pickle juice—are really popular in high-end cocktail bars, so it’s pretty surprising that pickle vodka never really caught on. Perfect for a pickled version of a dirty martini or to add a little brine to your Bloody Mary, brands like Naked Jay will also pickle your liver if you drink too much of it.
9. Cotton Candy
Pinnacle’s Cotton Candy vodka is perfect for when you’re watching the circus, or if you just want to clown around with weird flavors at your home bar. Pairs well with corn dogs, popcorn, and peanuts.
Whether you say “to-MAY-to” or “to-MAH-to,” you’ll say “Another round!” after having a savory cocktail with this vodka, produced by Three Olives. It’s also good for elevating that typical Bloody Mary into a tomato extravaganza.
Of course, you can always come up with your own crazy flavors. If none of these suit you, infuse your own!
Looking for a recipe to experiment with your new vodka knowledge? Here are some to get you started!
- Classic Bloody Mary
- Marshmallow Cake-tini Cocktail
- Double Rainbow Cake Jelly Shot
- Lemon-Infused Vodka (Limoncello)
- Vodka Gimlet Cocktail