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Vodka Flavor Trends

The world’s favorite white spirit is upping its flavor and marketing game. From incorporating a savory zing to adopting a sense of terroir into the marketing plan—particularly in the New World—many of the flavor profile trends are changing for vodka. All these new angles will no doubt keep consumers interested in the same white spirit that they have always loved.

Many smart marketers of the spirit are also pointing out the fact that vodka has long been low carb and gluten-free. It is not new news, but by underlining this benefit some smart brands are attracting attention from consumers on a low- to no-carb diet by presenting a healthy, enjoyable cocktail alternative.

Blurred Lines

Most U.S. consumers don’t know what makes domestically produced vodka different from international brands. This discrepancy has driven a number of brands to focus on the details of their vodkas’ terroir: an iconic term that wineries have long used as a marketing asset.

It also means that domestic vodka producers have started to call out where they are making the spirit and with what type of grain—or other base product—is used along with details on the distilling process. So vodka producers, particularly domestic ones, are finally successfully bringing attention to their unique production processes: much like wineries have done for centuries.

Vodka producers, particularly domestic ones, are finally successfully bringing attention to their unique production processes: much like wineries have done for centuries.

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A Healthy Focus

Consumer’s interests are focused on a cleaner and more natural flavors and the vodka market these days is meeting that need. New flavors are focused on real ingredients—such as berries—as opposed to sweet, artificial concoctions. Strawberry, rose and cucumber seems to be some of the top flavors in the new elixirs. Ginger and other reportedly digestion-friendly ingredients have also been popping up.

New, emerging mixers—like ginger beer—are leading the way, in new vodka cocktail taste profiles. Kale—the much-adored green of late—has also even made its appearance in a handful of new vodka brands.

Labels of the better vodka brands seem to be more straight forward and immediately cut to the chase about the quaff’s health benefits. Many new bottlings even share the fact that the vodka within the bottle is GMO-free.