What is a good quality yet affordable vodka

Test: The best vodka up to 15 euros

This post about cheap vodka is a guest post from a well-known bartender. He tells about his experiences and only gives his opinion here.

Does a good vodka have to be expensive? And what is “expensive” anyway? Or to put it another way: Can you really get a good 700 ml vodka for 15.00 euros? So a whole bottle, not a glass in the bar or disco! To answer these questions, I compared five comparatively cheap vodkas. You can find out in my test whether the spirits can keep what the full-bodied advertising promises. So that as much as possible everyone can use this test, I deliberately only tested those vodka brands that are available almost everywhere in Germany. However, we also had to pay attention to the manufacturing process in our test. So I left out the very cheap vodkas, as well as the even cheaper own brands of the well-known supermarkets and discounters.

Instead, I reach for the bestsellers Absolut Vodka, Russian Standard, Vodka Parliament, Three Sixty Vodka and Smirnoff. By the way: only two of these vodkas come from Russia, the others from Germany, Sweden and the USA. So my test takes into account vodka brands from all over the world. And this is how it is tested. Vodka is often drunk on ice or mixed with various other ingredients to make cocktails or long drinks. I consciously refrain from doing this in our test. The vodkas are tasted pure and not chilled. We use special nosing glasses in the test so that all taste nuances and aromas can develop optimally. The test is done blindly, so it is only discovered afterwards which variety is the one that has just been tried. The test results in descending order.

1st place: Three Sixty Vodka

One of the vodkas that have been on the market for some time is the Three Sixty brand. The bottle stands out due to its characteristic appearance with the impressive facet cut and the black label with the crossed sabers. While the content - as we are used to with vodka - is as clear as water. This impression changes quickly when tasting: Three Sixty Vodka has a special lightness. First about the smell: We are dealing with a fresh and soft vodka, which arouses associations of citrus fruits, vanilla and blueberries in the nose. The odor tendency is basically sweet and fresh. The taste also confirms this impression. The vodka tastes sweet, soft and round with hints of milk and cream. Thus, Three Sixty Vodka is ideal for beginners and lovers who like it a little gentler and yet no less expressive.

2nd place: Smirnoff Vodka

Although blessed with a typically Russian name, Smirnoff Vodka originated in the United States. And this is noticeable right from the first smell test: Like the American whiskeys, Smirnoff has a clear grain note that combines with hints of citrus fruits such as grapefruit or lemons. Overall, the smell is strong, but not unbalanced. Let's get to the taste: And here, too, Smirnoff leaves nothing to be desired. Hearty aromas tickle the palate, the vodka looks tart, for some people a bit spicy. The right partner for everyone who likes it a little stronger. Sensitive natures, however, will be less happy with this vodka.

3rd place: Absolut Vodka

Anyone who describes vodka as the purest of all spirits and therefore does not expect much independence in terms of smell and taste, has come to the right place with Absolut Vodka! In the odor test, this vodka was almost completely neutral, only a hint of citrus fruit and a barely perceptible grain note can be noted. In terms of taste, vodka lovers cannot expect a firework of aromas here. Absolut Vodka is mild, soft and largely neutral. It is therefore suitable for almost every occasion. If you taste it exactly, you will recognize slight nuances of citrus fruits and a slight hint of pepper in the finish.

4th place: Russian Standard Vodka

As the first real Russian in the test, Russian Standard does not show any nakedness. A vodka with rough edges that knows how to provoke and not everyone likes it. While some connoisseurs classify it as chemical, artificial and musty, others recommend it as full of character and powerful. The fact is: In my first test, the odor test, the Russian Standard was rather subtle, relatively neutral and without any really audible character. This impression changed during the taste test. I found the Russian Standard strong on the tongue, but a bit one-dimensional without any other flavors that only develop over time. A slightly musty aftertaste did not want to evaporate even after a few sips. Whereby it sells fantastically.

5th place: Vodka Parliament

The last of our tested vodkas up to 15.00 euros also takes last place in my personal ranking list. At first I was quite taken with the smell. The vodka smells strong, tart and clearly of grain. Connoisseurs can smell dried fruits. The disappointment followed on the palate: Vodka Parliament tasted bitter, dull and not very pleasant. You look for freshness in vain, but the vodka is reminiscent of cold smoke and ash in the finish. Few fans will get their money's worth with this vodka

The test result of the cheap vodkas up to 15 euros

The order of the tested vodkas presented by me also corresponds to the subjective results. The clear test winner for me is the Three Sixty Vodka. Everyone who prefers a soft yet characterful taste will be happy here. It impresses with its balance and the consistently pursued taste concept. A very good vodka for less than 15.00 euros! In second place follows the opposite of the test winner. No less good, but completely different in terms of taste and smell. The American Smirnoff Vodka impresses with its strong grain note and characterful aromas. Absolut Vodka follows in third place - a vodka that couldn't be more typical. As clear and pure as possible, with little independence, this vodka is very suitable for cocktails and long drinks. Drunk straight, some lovers find it a bit boring.

The fourth place vodka, Russian Standard, is also heading in this direction, although it interprets it a little differently. Despite its neutrality, this vodka exudes a special character and is quite powerful. What some perceive as opposites is for others a wonderful combination of the different properties. It's always worth spending a little more on vodka. You can get very high quality vodka for as little as 25 euros per bottle. But which is too good to mix. If you like to mix vodka with Red Bull or Cola, you will be happy with all five vodkas above.

Tips from the Spirituosen-Superbillig team

The five best types of vodka up to 15 euros named by the bartender can be found below. Our experienced team has added a few more varieties. These reflect the experience of long-term Spirituosen-Superbillig employees. Who have often drunk different types of vodka and recommend the listed types of vodka.

  • Parliament Russian Vodka 0.7 liters 38% vol.
    11,98 €*
    (Price per liter: € 17.11)
  • 12,98 €*
    (Price per liter: € 18.54)
  • Vox Vodka from the Netherlands / 97 out of 100 points
    15,67 €*
    (Price per liter: € 22.39)
  • Alpha Noble Vodka 0.7l 40%
    16,50 €*
    (Price per liter: € 23.57)
  • 9 Mile Vodka 0.7 liters 37.5% vol.
    14,30 €*
    (Price per liter: € 20.43)
  • Smirnoff Vodka Red Label 1l 37.5%
    14,88 €*
    (Price per liter: € 14.88)
  • Danzka Cranraz Vodka 0.7l 40%
    15,57 €*
    (Price per liter: € 22.24)
  • 14,37 €*
    (Price per liter: € 20.53)
  • 12,59 €*
    (Price per liter: € 17.99)
  • Three Sixty Vodka - Diamond Filtration 1.0L
    18,11 €*
    (Price per liter: € 18.11)