A number of vodka makers have been rolling out products with fresh-fruit flavors that range from zingy green apple to juicy Maine blueberry and brisk lemon tea (perfect for spiking Arnold Palmers). Here are a few to keep you sipping now through next year.
Absolut Orient Apple Vodka (Sweden; Pernod Ricard USA, Purchase, NY); $20, 89 points
This vodka has a heady, bright green-apple fragrance and a fleeting touch of ginger on the palate.
Drink it in: The Apple Vermont
2 ounces Absolut Orient Apple Vodka
1½ teaspoons maple syrup
2 dashes Angostura Bitters
Orange zest, for garnish
Combine the vodka, maple syrup and bitters in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well. Strain into a martini glass and garnish with orange zest.
Belvedere Lemon Tea (Poland; Moët Hennessy, New York, NY); $30, 90 points
New to the market, this perfectly clear vodka smells and tastes like black tea with lemon and honey, giving a new meaning to “tea time.”
Drink it in: Belvedere Lemon Teabreeze
2 ounces Belvedere Lemon Tea Vodka
2 ounces coconut water
2 ounces unfiltered apple juice
Fan of apple slices, for garnish (optional)
Combine the vodka, coconut water and apple juice in a tall glass filled with cubed ice and stir. Garnish with a fan of apple slices.
Hangar One Maine Wild Blueberry Vodka (USA; Proximo Spirits, Jersey City, NJ); $30, 92 points
Made with Maine blueberries, this clear spirit has a warm blueberry scent and a sweet, candy-like berry flavor on the lingering finish.
Drink it in: Garden Sipper
4 mint leaves
4 basil leaves
1 ounce simple syrup
1¾ ounces Hangar One Blueberry Vodka
2 ounces club soda
1 mint sprig, for garnish
In a mixing glass, muddle the mint and basil with the simple syrup. Add the blueberry vodka and club soda, and stir. Pour into a cocktail glass filled with ice and garnish with a mint sprig.
RÖKK Orange Vodka (Sweden; Diageo Americas, Norwalk, CT); $13, 91 points
This vodka’s pleasing juicy-sweet aroma evokes Satsuma oranges or tangerines, while the flavor runs to bitter orange. It’s sweet with a clean finish. Good value.
Drink it in: Orange Glow Cosmo
1½ ounces RÖKK Orange Vodka
½ ounce orange liqueur
¼ ounce lime juice
¼ ounce cranberry juice
¼ ounce blood orange juice
Orange wheel, for garnish
In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine the vodka, orange liqueur and fruit juices, and shake vigorously. Strain into a martini glass and garnish with an orange wheel.