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Friday, May 14, 2010

Hound Dog Peach Sweet Tea Flavored Vodka Review and Cocktail


LCBO released their early summer 2010 magazine some time ago and I, being the loyal customer that I have always been since the day I turned 19, bought a bottle of one of the new spirits they were advertising. This is Hound Dog Peach Sweet Tea Flavored Vodka and yes, it is a peach sweet tea flavored vodka, which unfortunately does not retain its 40% ABV. The spirit is not expensive at $24.95 CAD for a 750 mL bottle, but it is in limited quantities so by the time you read this review, there may not be any left in stock.

You guessed it, this does not have the typical vodka color, or should I say lack of. It has a bourbon-like darkness and very schnapps-like aroma. OK, I cannot simply put all the schnappses into one category, but I have only had 2 kinds of schnapps in my life - peach and mint - and this definitely smells like the former. The peach aroma is so strong, that I cannot detect any hints of vodka. The taste...wow...the taste. OK, now that I got you excited, the taste is a blend of peach schnapps and vodka, and this time you can definitely taste the vodka. The spirit starts off as a sweet peach schnapps, but quickly changes itself into more of a flavored vodka as it goes down. While in your mouth, you can detect some earthy and woody notes that can only come from the barrels, or from tea leaves. The afterburn is similar to that of doing shots of vodka. Yes, shots of vodka, because this is not the smoothest spirit I have had. I think I have to dig very deep to find a cheap whiskey or scotch with the same roughness. With the burn out of way, this is a very unique spirit which could be great on the rocks of served very, very cold. I am not a big fan of sweet peach schnapps due to a couple of incidents in the past, but I can see myself drinking this in a cocktail...which leads me onto the next section:

The Cocktail

I am not much of a mixologist so I rarely come up with creative ways of mixing alcoholic cocktails, which is why I will just follow the recipe listed on the back of the label:
  • 2 oz Hound Dog Peach Sweet Tea Flavoured Vodka
  • Tall glass, half filled with ice
  • Water to top off
  • Sprig of mint and lemon twist
I wish I had some club soda to try it fizzy, because the recipe above was a bit too flat for my taste. At first I used a lot of ice and the little water that fit in the glass was not enough to dilute the sweetness and the vodka taste so I once I finished the cocktail, I made myself a second one with only 4 ice cubes. This time there was enough water to turn this into a cocktail resembling peach iced tea. It was good, I liked it, but I think I can make the same thing by making peach iced tea and adding some plain vodka. Perhaps putting less of the vodka and some fresh lemon juice can improve this cocktail. Give it a shot.

Edit: I mixed another cocktail and this one went a little something like this:
  • 3 ice cubes in a tall glass
  • 1.5 oz of Hound Dog Peach Sweet Tea Flavoured Vodka
  • 4 oz of grape/raspberry juice
  • 3 oz of apple juice
I liked this combination a lot more than the suggested one. The acidic juices give the cocktail a nice bite and a refreshing taste while the peach flavour still makes an appearance, but it is no longer similar to that of peach schnapps. I loved this.

Scores:
Cost - $24.95 CAD for a 750 mL bottle from the LCBO
Taste - 6.9/10 for the vodka and 7.4/10 for the suggested cocktail, 9/10 for the one I made

Overall - 7.15/10...you guessed it, it is just an average of the scores from the vodka itself and the suggested cocktail

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