If flavoured vodka makes you think of sweet, syrupy and artificial flavours, this product is changing perceptions. LongLeaf Tea Vodka is an artisanal spirit produced in Australia and was recently rated the Best Flavoured Vodka in APAC by The San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2014.
Unlike many flavoured vodkas, LongLeaf Tea Vodka uses handpicked Ceylon Tea from a family-owned tea estate in Sri Lanka and doesn’t rely on artificial flavourings. The vodka is produced at the Hunter Distillery in the Hunter Valley in NSW using 100% organic sugar cane from Brazil as the base spirit. Originally, the base spirit was made of grape then wheat but they found that the molasses imparted a unique flavour to the tea along with a desirable finish.
The tea is infused into the vodka and then the tea stock is distilled. Some of the tea stock is then added to the final distilled product. Very little sugar from Brazilian sugar cane is used in the finished product and the spirit is cut using pure rain water.
LongLeaf Tea Vodka Tasting Notes
- Country of Origin: Australia
- ABV: 40%
- Colour: dark caramel, dark steeped tea
- Nose: soft aromas of tea leaves, hint of sweetness but not overpowering
- Palate: smooth with little alcohol burn, the front palate picks up the tea notes along with some sweetness and develops into bitter notes on the back palate
- Finish: medium to long, tannic with a slight bitterness on the finish
- RRP: $64.99 AUD 700ml bottle
Comments: LongLeaf Tea Vodka took me by surprise. At first sip, the liquid tasted like a sweetened alcoholic tea. On subsequent tastings, it opened up on the palate beyond just a boozy tea. The tea flavour is prominent and one that tastes natural and not in any way synthetic as some flavoured vodkas tend to be. However, LongLeaf Tea Vodka is not a sipping vodka. It’s well suited to cocktails, adding a bitter and earthy element to a drink. For the home bartender, try LongLeaf Tea Vodka topped with soda water and a lemon wedge as garnish, or with ginger beer, a dash of bitters and garnish with a lime wheel. Alternatively, try our LongLeaf Tea Vodka Cocktail Recipe.
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