Finally another head-to-head, it sure has been awhile. Tonight we have two American produced vodkas though technically 3-O grape is English Vodka that I assume is flavoured in USA. Skyy is meant to taste like generic purple grape while 3-0 has specified CONCORD GRAPE as their varietal. Neither company list their ingredients but state “natural” grape flavour. (Note: this is an updated review from 2012)
1) Skyy Infusions Grape – 35% ABV – 750ml, (San Fran, CA, USA) ~$24 CAD
- Skyy also makes a “Moscato infused Vodka”.
2) Three Olives – 35% ABV – 750ml, (Lawrenceburg, IN, USA), ~$26 CAD
- Made with imported Vodka from England but bottled and produced in USA.
- 3-O also has a product called “Purple” which is supposed to taste like frozen crushed grapes. I’ll put it head-to-head with the winner in the future.
- The bottle in the photo is an older bottling and the updated label is much cooler imo.
Nose: Skyy starts off with half-candy/half-real pleasant grape aroma but is quickly overwhelmed by unwanted sharp alcohol nasal burn. Subsequent nosings are the same. Three Olives has a similar grape nose but much more gentle and subdued. Skyy’s nose is in 8000rpm 2nd gear while Three-O is cruising safely in a school zone. Based on which I would WANT to drink, the winner is Three Olives.
Taste & Texture: Skyy – very grapey up front, the intensity of the grape flavour matches the intensity of the nose. Medium sweetness in the mids, alcohol nastiness and bitterness thereafter. Three Olives is thicker, delayed alcohol burn, and more refined overall; the grape flavour isn’t quite in your face but neither is the alcohol burn. Skyy feels like an OVERHAND RIGHT whereas Three-O hits like a BACKPEDALING JAB. If I could only choose one grape vodka on my shelf I would choose Three Olives. As a sipper it’s obvious, but as a mixer I think Three-O would be easier to balance since it isn’t so “in-your-face”. In reality though I’m sure both go well in cocktails.
- Skyy has bolder flavour but is less smooth. It’ll go well in a low ABV mixed drink.
- Three Olives is much smoother, balanceable, packaged nicer, and more suited for higher ABV cocktails.
- (Don’t bother with Smirnoff White Grape (D-), read my review here)
WINNER = Three Olives Grape