26 Popular Vodka Brands, Ranked By Their Versatility

From Agent 007 to the "Big Lebowski," vodka drinks can be found in our favorite movies and throughout popular culture. In fact, vodka is one of America's top-selling spirits, with two of the best U.S. spirit companies in 2019 and 2020 being vodka brands. 

But, what is vodka? By definition, standard vodka is a neutral spirit that contains no colors or flavors and has at least 40% alcohol per volume. Flavoring for vodkas only happens after the distillation process. The liquor can be made from a number of ingredients, such as wheat, corn, sugar beet molasses, potatoes, rice, and fruit.

To help you sort through all the vodka options, we've put together this guide to popular vodka brands, ranked by versatility. A versatile vodka is one bottle you always want to have on your home bar, as it can be used as a sipper or shooter, a sweet or savory cocktail ingredient, and the base of a fabulous martini. To reach these conclusions, we looked at scores of online reviews and utilized our own professional bartending expertise.

26. Svedka

In 2019 and 2020, Svedka was named the 10th leading brand in the distilled spirits category. While this vodka may have Swedish origins, the company now promotes itself as "vodka made in the USA" and has removed the Swedish brand and labeling from its packaging. While you can still find Swedish-labeled bottles of vodka, made from Swedish wheat, this liquor is now made from American corn, and the company has reduced its number of distillations from five to four. 

All in all, the quality of Svedka seems to be changing, although this may not necessarily be a bad thing. Svedka vodka is still 80-proof and can be purchased at a reasonable price. Svedka also offers a variety of flavors, as well as vodka seltzers. However, due to the inconsistencies in marketing and a flavor profile heavy on citrus and bread notes, Svedka does not rank well on our list.

25. Grey Goose

The 90s are having a bit of a moment, and that is a good thing for Grey Goose — a brand that's very 1990s. Grey Goose was founded by Sydney Frank, an American businessman who wanted to create a premium vodka for the American market. In 1996, Frank teamed up with a cognac distiller in France to make this vodka. Less than a decade later, Grey Goose was sold to Bacardi. 

Grey Goose is still made in Cognac, France, using French wheat as its base and water from Gensac spring. It comes in at 80 proof and has bready, earthy tasting notes with a hint of heat and citrus. Like many companies, Grey Goose makes flavored vodkas; but unlike brands that create bold flavors, such as Smirnoff and Pinnacle, the company stays true to its premium roots and has created a line of fruit- and botanical-flavored vodkas.

Grey Goose vodka did a truly impressive job building its reputation as a premium brand. It jumped into the market and charged nearly twice that of competitors. The company aligned itself with influential brands and used smart promotions to boost its own brand. While Grey Goose has been incredibly successful, all the marketing in the world does not necessarily elevate the product. In the end, Grey Goose is good but does not quite live up to its premium reputation.

24. Smirnoff

Ranked the No. 2 best-selling liquor in the U.S. in 2019 and 2020, you may be wondering why Smirnoff lands near the bottom of our list. It is not that the vodka is bad. It's just that Smirnoff is suitable for very specific things, which do not include drinking it straight.

Founded in 1864 in Moscow, the company it was known, simply, by the name Smirnov. Sadly, due to a change in Russian law, the company was forced to close in 1914, but, that did not stop them completely. Vladimir Smirnov, the founder's son, moved to France to restart the family business. He changed the name to Smirnoff and started producing vodka once again.

Smirnoff's distillery is now located in the U.S. The vodka is made from a corn mash, which makes it gluten-free. Smirnoff vodka boasts a "robust flavor with a dry finish," and is available as both 80 proof and 100 proof. It's primarily used for mixing and the company is often credited with the creation of the Moscow Mule. Smirnoff now offers a wide variety of flavored vodkas for all your mixing needs.

23. Pinnacle

As a relative newcomer on the scene, Pinnacle has made a splash in the vodka community with its smooth taste and abundant flavors. The company, now owned by alcohol conglomerate Beam-Suntory, was founded in 2003 by Paul Coulombe in France. 

Pinnacle uses French wheat as the base of its spirit, along with pure spring water. The vodka is filtered five times to achieve a smooth flavor.  This vodka has found favor in clubs and college frat parties thanks to its huge line of flavored vodkas, including coconut, habanero, cucumber, and whipped cream. The flavored vodka runs 70 to 80 proof, while the original is available up to 100 proof. 

While the company's original vodka is not bad, it's the flavored varieties that shine. Pinnacle vodka is an excellent choice for a vodka tonic or mixing it into a cocktail, which is why it comes in at No. 23 on our list.

22. Stillhouse

Stillhouse is another brand looking to make a splash on the bar scene. Forgoing the traditional glass bottle, Stillhouse vodka comes in a stainless steel metal container that might be more at home on the shelf in an automotive store than in a bar. The company argues that the metal bottle is not just aesthetic — it's innovative. Aside from being breakable, glass doesn't chill as fast as metal. The brand's unusual packaging not only gets colder faster, but it also allows consumers to take them anywhere.

Stillhouse comes to us from the bourbon heartland — Tennessee. It may seem odd to produce vodka in whiskey territory, but the brand appears to know what it's doing. The company uses 100% estate-grown corn as its mash base, which is the same ingredient found in bourbon. In addition, Stillhouse uses limestone water that is filtered through sugar maple charcoal to produce its 80-proof vodka. Unsurprisingly, the brand has expanded and now offers a variety of flavored vodkas and even some whiskeys.

So does this vodka live up to its slogan of "America's Finest"? According to reviews from bloggers, such as Travel Distilled, not entirely. The packaging is unique and easy to use, but the vodka itself is a tad harsh. While it is a good vodka for mixing or when you're on the go, it would not be our top choice for sipping.

21. Skyy

Skyy vodka was founded in San Francisco in 1992. On a shelf full of clear bottles that showcase the colorless nature of most distillations, Skyy vodka stands out with a cobalt blue bottle. The brand created the vodka to make "the perfect martini," and as such, it is a good mixing vodka. Skyy is made using water that has been enhanced with minerals from the Pacific and filtered through limestone. The base of the vodka is grains. The company uses a four-column distillation process and filters the liquor three times to remove impurities and enhance the flavor.

Skyy offers a classic vodka that is 80 proof and great for mixing into cocktails. A selection of flavored vodkas is also available, including blood orange, citrus, pineapple, and watermelon. The flavored varieties come in slightly lower at 70 proof. Because Skyy vodka has an affordable price and is a good, unpretentious mixing vodka, it comes in at No. 21 on our list.

20. Absolut Vodka

Absolut Vodka is a Swedish company owned by Pernod Ricard, the world's second-largest wine and spirits company. Despite the company's size, it takes great care in producing its product and has a positive impact on the world. The company follows a "one source" model, which means they produce every part of the vodka in one place and use local ingredients. The vodka is made using winter wheat that is grown in Sweden, and the company works with sustainable carbon-neutral farming techniques for distillation. Additionally, the bottles are made with recycled glass.

Aside from using sustainable methods, Absolut makes a solid vodka. The classic vodka is 80 proof, described as clean with hints of dried fruit. The company also offers a large selection of flavored vodkas and premixed vodka cocktails.

While not a vodka you'd necessarily want to sip, Absolut is a great mixer, hence the ranking on our list. The company knows this and strongly promotes the liquor for mixing into cocktails. With their commitment to sustainability, this is a vodka that not only tastes good but is also one you can feel good about drinking.

19. Chopin vodka

Chopin is a family-owned company that takes great pride in the quality of its products. The Chopin estate dates back to the 1700s and is comprised of a distillery and nearby buildings. It is situated on 17 acres in Krzesk, a village in Poland. Because Chopin has its own distillery, it produces the alcohol from raw ingredients rather than purchasing it from commercial distilleries. Many of the ingredients used to create the vodka are harvested from farms within 18 miles of the estate.

Rather than making flavored vodkas, the company focuses on producing traditional varieties. Chopin's potato vodka contains up to 40 potatoes per bottle and has hints of green apple and vanilla. It is also the recipient of numerous awards. Chopin also offers rye vodka, which has a peppery flavor, as well as wheat vodka, which has notes of caramel. Each bottle is 80 proof. 

It is clear that Chopin cares deeply about the quality of its vodka. The brand has dubbed it "ultra-luxury" and it has a price to match. The vodka is better than many brands, but is not the best out there, which is why it sits at No. 19 on our list.

18. Deep Eddy

Deep Eddy may be second fiddle in popularity when it comes to Texas-made vodka, after the ubiquitous Tito's, but it's a very different product that's worth a look. Like Tito's, it's also made from corn, but it goes through a more intense process with the aim of achieving a truly neutral flavor. This includes eight filtration processes and ten distillations.

Deep Eddy's commitment to producing a neutral spirit makes it a great cocktail-mixing vodka, but this lack of unique character takes away from its appeal as a sipping vodka. That said, it's a very clean vodka, so drinking it on its own isn't an unpleasant experience. There are just many other vodkas that are more flavorful and interesting.

Along with their original vodka, Deep Eddy makes an extensive line of flavored vodkas. What sets these apart is that they're made with real fruit rather than the usual artificial flavorings and extracts. They also make a sweet tea flavor, which is perfect for spiking your Arnold Palmer on a hot day. So while the basic vodka is serviceable, Deep Eddy's flavored selections are where the brand truly shines.

17. Tito's Handmade Vodka

Tito's Handmade Vodka was named by the American Association of Wine Economists as the No.1 spirit in 2019 and 2020. That is a lot of hype to live up to — so does it? 

Tito's was founded by Bert "Tito" Beveridge. After trying his hand at a few different ventures, Tito began making flavored vodkas as a hobby. When he tried to sell them to local liquor stores in Texas, he found they were not interested unless he could make one that was "so smooth you could drink it straight." So he did. In 1995, Tito acquired a distillery permit in Texas and set out to make a vodka that was smooth enough for sipping. 

Tito's vodka is made using corn and is both kosher and gluten-free. The company distinguishes itself by using old-fashioned pot stills in lieu of the column stills used by most companies. Pot still distillation is a more strenuous process, but the company feels it is worth the effort. Tito's also goes the extra mile and taste tests every batch to ensure quality. Each bottle contains 40% alcohol, with tasting notes described as sweet with hints of porridge.

16. Effen vodka

Effen Vodka was launched in 2003. The company is currently owned by Beam Suntory and the vodka is imported from Holland. Effen describes itself as a premium vodka but does not peg itself into the stuffy liquor hole. Instead, the brand seems to market itself predominantly toward nightclubs, marketed with imagery and references to dance floors.

The base of Effen Vodka is made with 100% wheat and the liquor has a texture that is a self-proclaimed "mixologist's dream." The original vodka has a smooth taste with a fresh and clean aroma. The brand also produces several flavored vodkas, including black cherry, yuzu citrus, rose, raspberry, and cucumber. The vodka ranges from 75 to 80 proof, depending on the flavor.

Coming in at No. 16, Effen Vodka is a good multi-purpose vodka with a subtle flavor and minimal aftertaste. It tends to be a bit pricier, but this liquor will certainly get the party started.

15. Hanson of Sonoma organic vodka

Hanson of Sonoma vodka does things a little differently. Most vodka is made from grains or potatoes, but since the liquor can be made from anything, Hanson of Sanoma produces a grape-based variety. Given the brand's California location in the Sonoma wine country, the use of grapes for its vodka just makes sense.

Hanson of Sonoma uses only organic ingredients to make its products. The company uses a combination of column and pot stills to create a clean and smooth vodka that's 80 proof. The brand's original vodka is described as as "very fruity." The brand also offers a line of organic flavored vodkas, including cucumber, habanero, Meyer lemon, mandarin, espresso, and pink grapefruit. 

Hanson of Sonoma is a good vodka for those looking for a unique taste and undeniable quality. The vodka is great for sipping as well as mixing and provides a nice organic alternative to other artificially-flavored vodkas.

14. New Amsterdam

New Amsterdam vodka was launched by E & J Gallo Winery in 2011. Despite being relatively new to the vodka world, New Amsterdam was the seventh best-selling liquor brand in the United States in 2019 and 2020. While it helps that it has a large parent company backing it, the brand strives to produce quality vodka. New Amsterdam uses a corn mash that is distilled no less than five times and filtered three times to create a smooth drink.

New Amsterdam vodka comes in two strengths. Original is 80 proof and described as crisp and smooth. A more potent 100 Proof Vodka is also available that is said to be smooth and citrusy and has "aromas of sweet frosting." In addition, the company offers a selection of flavored vodkas.  Overall, New Amsterdam vodka comes in at a reasonable price and has a clean, smooth flavor making it an excellent addition to any bar. These qualities landed it at the No. 14 spot on our list.

13. Cîroc

While the Cîroc brand launched in 2003, the family behind the name has been in the alcohol business since the 16th century. The company's headquarters are located in Villevert, France, in a home that has been in the family for more than 500 years. 

Jean-Sébastien Robicquet, the creator and master distiller of Cîroc vodka, blends his family's winemaking and distilling history by using grapes as the base for the liquor. The vodka is distilled four times in column stills before finishing with a fifth distillation in copper pot stills. The final product is a 40 proof gluten-free, "ultra-premium" vodka that is lightly sweet and offers notes of grape. The brand also offers a selection of vodka spritz in a collaboration with noted rapper Sean "Diddy" Combs.

With Cîroc vodka's rich flavor and affordable price, it is a solid vodka for those looking for a high-quality vodka on the fruitier side. The vodka can be enjoyed straight, allowing you to pick up on the more subtle notes, or mixed in your favorite vodka cocktail.

12. Ketel One

In 2019 and 2020, Ketel One just barely made it onto the list of the top 20 liquor brands sold in the United States. The company's history dates back to 1691 when it was founded by Joanness Nolet in the Netherlands. Since then, the company has gone through various iterations and setbacks. By the 1900s, the company was producing many different types of liquor until Carolus Nolet took over and decided to focus on one type: vodka. In 1983, Ketel One vodka was born and named after the oldest coal-fired pot still in use by the company: Distilleerketel #1.

Ketel One is one of the few vodka companies that make its product using a pot still. While the process begins with using a more popular column, the second distillation takes place in a pot still to enhance the flavor. The 80-proof vodka is made with wheat as the base and is described as being crisp and light. The original variety was voted No.1 best-selling vodka by Drinks International and received 98 points from Cigar & Spirits Magazine. In addition to classic vodka, the company also offers multiple flavors, including a line of fruit-flavored vodkas, and Ketel One pre-mixed cocktails are also available on supermarket shelves.

Overall, Ketel One is a good general-use vodka that will suit most needs. This is why it comes in at No. 12 on our list.

11. Stoli

Hailing from Latvia, Stoli (or Stolichnaya) developed its signature vodka recipe in 1938, although the brand did not officially launch until the 1950s. In 1962 Stoli became a vodka pioneer by offering flavored vodkas distributed worldwide — a first for the industry.

Stoli original is made from a combination of wheat and rye, and as of 2016, the company offers a gluten-free blend that features buckwheat and corn. According to Difford's Guide, Stoli vodka offers notes of pepper and licorice.

As a pioneer in flavored vodkas, it is not surprising that Stoli now offers a wide range of vodka choices, including fruit flavors, pepper, and salted caramel. Most of the brand's vodka ranges from 70 to 80 proof, but the company also produces a 100 proof bottle. This is a quality standard vodka that is best mixed but can be enjoyed straight. It earns a No. 11 spot on our list because of the brand's focus on purity over flavors.

10. Belvedere

It is amazing how many brands claim to be the oldest at what they do, but Belvedere seems to have some legitimate claims in this department. According to the company, it produces the world's first "super-premium vodka." It also makes its product in the oldest continuously operating facility in the world, which has been making vodka since 1910.

As a Polish brand, the company adheres to Polish vodka regulations, which are more stringent than in the United States. These regulations include making vodka of only grains or potatoes and nothing else. Belvedere produces its vodka with Polish rye and purified water and distills it using a heat-based method, or as the company says, "fire." The resulting vodka has a peppery and nutty taste that earned it 90 points in the 2020 Ultimate Spirit Challenge. In addition to its superb classic vodka, the company produces a line of botanical and specialty vodkas. 

A bottle of Belvedere vodka is 80 proof and can be a smidge on the pricey side, but it is absolutely worth it. This is a vodka to be sipped and savored.

9. Hangar 1

Hangar 1 Vodka is located in Alameda, California, and was founded in 2001 as an offshoot of St. George Spirits by Jörg Rupf. The brand derived its name from the distillery location in an old World War II air station: Hangar 1. In 2010, Proximo Spirits acquired the Hanger 1 vodka line of St. George, and while St. George continued producing the liquor for a few years after that, Hangar 1 now has its own distillery.

Hangar 1 vodka is unique in both ingredients and preparation. The liquor is made using a combination of grapes and grains. This combination gives it a fruity and floral flavor profile. In addition to a classic vodka, the company also offers flavored varieties, such as honeycomb, makrut lime, and rosé. All of the vodkas are 80 proof. 

While Hangar 1 is a small-batch distillery and does charge a premium for its vodka, it is well worth it. Consumers have left rave reviews about the quality of the product, which is why it comes in at No. 9 on our list.

8. Crystal Head

This is one vodka you will not miss on the shelves. Crystal Head vodka's distinctive skull-shaped bottle catches the eye of everyone and is incredibly awkward to pack into a box. This crystal head bottle was not designed to be ordinary. Crystal Head, founded by actor and comedian Dan Ackroyd of "Saturday Night Live" and "Ghostbusters" fame, designed the bottle to stand out and emphasize the brand's "creative spirit."

One might worry that the brand is just a pretty face with no substance, but Ackroyd and cofounder/artist John Alexander put just as much thought into the contents as the bottle. All of Crystal Head's products are additive-free and certified kosher. 

The company does not have as large a repertoire of vodka as some competitors, but they make three, 80 proof classic vodkas, each with a unique base. An excellent choice for mixing a white russian, the original Crystal Head vodka is made with a corn base and offers notes of citrus and vanilla. Aurora is made with English wheat and has floral and anise notes. Oynx is made using Blue Weber agave, which produces a noticeably earthy and peppery flavor. Crystal Head tends to be on the pricier side, but it is worth the splurge. 

7. Khor Platinum

Khor Platinum is a corn-based vodka from Ukraine. It's won multiple gold medals in tasting competitions around the world and sits at the lower end of the price spectrum, making it an excellent option when you're looking for a good value. It's marketed primarily as a cocktail vodka. Online reviews from drinkers are overwhelmingly positive, with many stating that it makes a great martini and complimenting its smoothness and pleasant flavor.

Massively popular around the world, Khor is typically among the top five best-selling vodkas year after year, coming in at number four in 2023. Popularity doesn't necessarily denote quality, but along with the awards, it's a safe bet. Some reviewers complain about unpleasant bitter flavors, so it may be better suited for mixing than drinking on its own, but for the price, it may be worth putting up with a few imperfections. The positives greatly outweigh the negatives, which places this vodka fairly high on our list.

6. Haku Vodka

Haku Vodka is produced by the Japanese distillation powerhouse House of Suntory. While the company was founded in 1899 by Shinjiro Torii, it was not until 1956 that it began producing vodka.

Suntory makes its vodka from a base of 100% Japanese white rice; the name Haku is Japanese for "white," and is used to represent this central ingredient. As the company points out, contrary to western belief, white rice is not a staple food in Japanese culture and historically was reserved as a luxury for nobility. Suntory uses white rice to show the care and thought it puts into the vodka and to produce a unique experience in the Japanese spirit.

In addition to using rice, the mixture is fermented with rice Koji, a traditional Japanese fermentation product. It's then filtered with bamboo charcoal. The final product is 80 proof and offers tastes of sweet rice and light floral notes. The ingredients and process come together to create a smooth vodka that offers a subtly different taste from the standard types you may find in an American bar. As an exceptional vodka to enjoy neat, it is a great choice for those looking for something a little different.

5. Harridan Vodka

Founded in 2020, Harridan Vodka is the newest vodka on this list, per Harridan Vodka.But do not let its youth lull you into a false sense of security; this female-owned and operated brand is making a splash in the vodka world. The company name is based on the word harridan, which means "a bossy and/or belligerent old woman," which is perfectly appropriate for a vodka that demands to be noticed.

Harridan Vodka is made from corn and comes in at 88 proof, which is higher than average. The flavor profile contains notes of pepper, toffee, vanilla, and citrus. Each bottle is made from recycled glass and is sealed with a black wax seal that completes the product's elegant, boutique look. 

As a new, small-batch company, Harridan Vodka keeps its prices on the higher side. However, early reviews for this vodka are strong, which is why it makes the top five on our list. If you're in the market for a top-shelf vodka, this one hits the spot.

4. Boyd & Blair

Boyd & Blair makes superb vodka. It is produces by an independent distillery that was founded in 2008 and is based in Pennsylvania. While it may be small, that has not stopped this company from going head to head with larger producers and, oftentimes, beating them in competitions. In addition to winning numerous awards, the company was also listed as the "world's best vodka" by the Ultimate Spirits Challenge.

The company takes great care in making its vodka, using locally sourced potatoes that the company states make a creamier mouthfeel and produce a better liquor. The mixture is fermented with champagne yeast to help bring out the natural sweetness and produce a truly remarkable vodka. The finished product is a smooth and dreamy product that is 80 proof and goes down incredibly easily. Since Boyd & Blair vodka can be enjoyed straight or mixed into a cocktail, it comes in at No. 3 on our list. 

3. Reyka

Reyka vodka is an Icelandic vodka owned by Scottish company William Grant & Sons. It may seem somewhat counter-intuitive to have a Scottish Icelandic vodka, but Reyka is an incredible vodka made like no other. 

Reyka vodka is made from barley and wheat from Scotland. The mash is mixed with glacial spring water from a lava field that is 4,000 years old, which the company states make it "some of the purest in the world." Reyka then uses a Carter Head still to produce an incredibly smooth vodka with just one distillation. These stills are more commonly used in gin production and offer extra distillation and copper content that was historically used in low-quality spirits. The spirit is then filtered through lava rocks. Each bottle of Reyka vodka is 80 proof. 

The clear liquor is described as soft with a crisp finish. It has gentle notes of pepper and citrus. Each batch that Reyka produces only consists of 255 cases of vodka. Reviewers rave about the vodka, making it a top pick for sipping or mixing.

2. Pur

Pur Vodka hails from Montreal, Canada. As the bottle states, it is the "world's most awarded Canadian Vodka," having won 83 medals at some of the world's most prestigious liquor competitions. Since its launch in 2009, it has been named the world's most notable vodka five times. The expectations have been set pretty high for this one, and luckily, the brand meets them.

This vodka is made using corn sourced from Ontario and spring water from glaciers in northern Quebec. The final product is 80 proof and offers mineral and dairy notes with a hint of black pepper. The company also produces Pur Vodka Série Autographe, a line of flavored vodkas.

If the perfect vodka is one that is so smooth and pure it is instantly drinkable, then Pur succeeds. The one complaint is that the vodka excels at this so well that you may lose the discernible characteristics of its taste. However, it is clear that Pur is the epitome of what vodka should be, and as a top-shelf vodka, this is nearly perfect.

1. Kirkland Signature American

Loved by bargain hunters and aficionados alike, Costco's Kirkland Signature American vodka is the top choice on this list. It's unbeatable in just about every category — value, flavor, and most importantly, versatility. Distilled six times, it's got a clean and pure flavor, but doesn't completely lack taste. The texture is also notable, boasting a creamy richness that isn't typically found in vodkas at lower price points. This textural characteristic helps the vodka stand up in mixed drinks and cocktails, while also making it a pleasant sipper. Kirkland vodka is so good, there have been years of rumors going around that it's actually premium juice, namely Grey Goose, with a bargain label.

Thanks to Costco's commitment to value, this vodka is the best deal on the market. You can't match the quality you get for the price with any other brand. The main issue, which can be a drawback for some, is that it's only available in one size, the 1.75 liter bottle. This could be a real problem for people in smaller spaces, but can also be a boon for those who're throwing parties, or those who just like buying items in bulk, which is likely most Costco customers. If you're sipping it over a long period of time, be sure to check out our tips for proper vodka storage.


To select the bottles for this list, we aimed to include vodkas from a range of price points that are fairly widely available. The rankings are based on a combination of factors including flavor, quality, and value, but the most important element we looked for was versatility. Basically, that means the vodka is equally well-suited to both drinking straight and mixing into cocktails due to its smoothness, structure, and flavor. We used online reviews from multiple sources, as well as personal experience, including years of spirits expertise and professional bartending experience, to rank each brand.