MM columnist and Drinks Enthusiast, David Marsland, asks if you've ever heard of the legend of the 13 crystal skulls?
Found around the world and dated between 5,000 and 35,000 years old, it is said that they were carved over a period of hundred of years, with no reasoning behind them.
Many however believe that they offer spiritual powers. Two such men who are fascinated with this story are Dan Aykroyd and John Alexander.
Using this inspiration, they decided to produce a spirit that resembles the spiritual power and enlightenment of the 13 crystal skulls, which results in Crystal Head avoiding the use of additives during creation.
The bottle itself is in memory of the 13 crystal skulls, and created by John Alexander who is a veteran fine artist. After more than two years in development, the glass depiction of a head was complete with Milan-based manufacturer Bruni Glass declaring it to be a bottle of unsurpassed complexity and quality.
With the bottle complete, the decision was made to create a unique vodka using unique ingredients. First, Newfoundland, Canada was the choice of the water source, using the deep glacial aquifer at the easternmost landmass in North America.
This water seeps to the surface through a bed of porous rock which serves as a natural filter. It was here that the founders decided to call the place home for the Crystal Head distillery.
Production of Crystal Head Vodka starts with grain grown in the Kent/Chatham region of Ontario.
These grains are then processed and distilled four times to produce a neutral grain spirit at 95% abv which is then reduced down to 40% abv using the water taken from the deep aquifers in the Newfoundland. Crystal Head Vodka is then triple charcoal filtered and then finally filtered three times through 500-million year-old crystals known as Herkimer Diamonds.
These quartz crystals are found in very few places in the world, including Herkimer, New York and regions in Tibet and Afghanistan.
So how does Crystal Head do after being filtered through very rare diamonds? Well below i give to you my tasting notes -
Crystal Head – 40%
Smooth and light on the nose with hints of vanilla gently making its way around. A slight kick when it first hits the palate, but it mellows quickly into a smooth offering. A slight peppery kick at the end, but a long mouth-watering sensation dominates it.
A great vodka with a long flavour does well for the sipping drinker, but it also creates some fantastic cocktails -
Bare Bones Pomegranate
50ml Crystal Head
25ml Pomegranate juice
25ml Fresh lemon juice
5ml of 2:1 sugar syrup
Combine all ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake well, then strain into a martini glass. Garnish with fresh berries.
The Crystal Cooler
75ml Crystal Head
50ml Orange juice
50ml Passion fruit juice
25ml Fresh lemon juice
Dash agave syrup
Add Crystal Head Vodka, orange juice, passion fruit juice and fresh lemon juice into a shaker with ice. Shake well. Strain into a cocktail glass filled with ice. Top with soda water and garnish with orange slice.
Crystal Head is already winning awards too including San Francisco World Spirits Competition, 2011 Double Gold Medal, San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2009 Silver Medal and LA Spirits & Wine Competition 2009 Silver Medal and Special Jury Award for Unique Packaging.
I’ve been seeing Crystal Head pop up in bars over the past year, so if you can, give it a go or ask your bartender to create you one of the recipes above.
Enjoy and enjoy you shall!
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