About Crystal Head Vodka
Vodka has a reputation of being the cleanest spirit on the market, but what if we told you additive-free vodka is a rarity? This revelation is what led actor Dan Aykroyd and artist John Alexander to create Crystal Head Vodka, a quartz-filtered, additive-free Canadian vodka.
Crystal Head was founded on a desire for access to additive-free vodka, something that’s rarely produced. Founders Dan Aykroyd and John Alexander were united upon this foundation, so they set out to design something unique and pure.
History’s infamous thirteen crystal heads were a pivotal inspiration for this vodka lineup, and it’s what inspired Alexander’s bottle design. Each of Crystal Head’s three vodka varieties features a different colored glass skull-shaped bottle from Bruni Glass, an Italian glassmaker.
Released around the same time as the popular movie, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Head, what could have been a conflict between the two business entities became a beautiful collaboration, as Steven Spielberg asked to serve Crystal Head at the premier of the newest member of the Indiana Jones franchise.
This unexpected exposure is largely to thank for the early success of this new Canadian vodka. The vodka quickly spread through liquor stores in Canada, and eventually came to be sold and popularized all over the world.
What is in Crystal Head Vodka?
Crystal Head is one of the first popular additive-free vodkas, meaning it’s made simply from whole, natural ingredients and uses a natural distillation and filtration process.
Crystal Head Vodka produces three distinct recipes: One from sweet corn, one from English wheat, and one from pure agave. The three each have a distinct vodka flavor, but they all contain Newfoundland water, are distilled four times, and each undergoes seven filtrations through herkimer diamonds, a type of quartz, before bottling and distribution.
Where to Buy Crystal Head Vodka
Crystal Head Vodka is available in most regions where liquor is sold, but primarily in stores with a large vodka section as the brand remains a small, niche liquor. It’s not impossible to find in stores like Costco and Walmart, and many liquor stores stock the spirit. But to ensure stock locally, visit drizly.com to see which stores near you carry Crystal Head.
Crystal Head Vodka Prices
|Sweet Corn Vodka|
|Ketel One Vodka||40% (80 proof)||50ml||$3.90|
|Crystal Head Original Vodka- Pride Edition||40% (80 proof)||750ml||$44.00|
|Crystal Head Original Vodka- John Alexander Limited Edition Bottling||40% (80 proof)||750ml||$160.00|
|English Wheat Vodka|
|Crystal Head Aurora Vodka||40% (80 proof)||750ml||$47.00|
|Blue Agave Vodka|
|Crystal Head Onyx Vodka||40% (80 proof)||750ml||$56.00|
Crystal Head Vodka Buying Guide
Crystal Head comes in three varieties, and here’s a guide to them all to help you make the best personal purchasing decision.
Crystal Head’s original recipe uses a Canadian sweet corn mash bill to distill into a smooth, sweet vodka. This recipe is also available in collectable limited edition bottlings. On current offer are a rainbow colored gay pride bottle and a special artistic design by John Alexander displaying the grim reaper in his skeletal form with a natural landscape backdrop across the entire bottle.
Aurora is an English wheat vodka processed much the same as the original recipe. The flavor is a little drier, a little spicier, than the original recipe, and suits a different palate. This is available in an opalescent bottle reminiscent of the aurora borealis.
Crystal Head’s Onyx vodka is the first internationally distributed blue agave vodka, and it’s available in a black glass Head bottle. This vodka has the most complex flavor out of Crystal Head’s vodkas, offering citrus, grass, and spice on the palate.
The Best Way(s) to Drink Crystal Head
Crystal Head Cocktail Recipes
1) Night Cap
- 2 oz. Crystal Head Vodka
- 1 oz. Fresh Espresso
- ½ oz. Coffee Liqueur
- ¼ oz. Simple Syrup
Add Crystal Head Vodka, espresso, coffee liqueur and simple syrup into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously over ice for 10-15 seconds. Strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with grated dark chocolate and 3 espresso beans.
2) Crystal Cranberry Head
- 1 ½ oz. Crystal Head Vodka
- 1 oz. Cranberry Syrup
- ½ oz. Fresh Lime Juice
- Fresh Cucumber, Mint, and Cranberries
- Top with Sparkling Wine
In a cocktail shaker, muddle two cucumber slices, 3-4 mint leaves and 4-5 cranberries. Add Crystal Head Vodka, cranberry syrup, lime juice and plenty of ice. Shake vigorously for 10-15 seconds. Double strain into a chilled coupe glass and top with sparkling wine. Garnish with a mint and cranberry skewer.
3) Cold Comfort
- 1 ½ oz. Crystal Head Vodka
- 1 oz. Dark Rum
- 4 oz. Apple Cider
- 1 Cinnamon Stick
In a cocktail shaker add Crystal Head Vodka, dark rum and apple cider with ice. Shake vigorously for 10-15 seconds. Strain into a rocks glass with ice. Garnish with a cinnamon stick, finely grated cinnamon and thinly sliced apple.
4) Dan’s 54 Bar Car
- 2 oz. Crystal Head Vodka
- Splash of Dry Vermouth
- Splash of Olive Brine
- 2 Olives
- 1 Pearl Onion
Add a splash of dry vermouth into the serving glass, swirl around to coat and discard any excess. Add Crystal Head Vodka and olive brine into a shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into the coated rocks glass. Garnish with a skewer of two olives and a pearl onion.
5 Best Things to Mix with Crystal Head
Crystal Head has three recipes, all of which mix well with single mixers for a complex vodka beverage. While none of them are flavored, they each have a distinct palate and nose that’s effortlessly highlighted by these mixers.
- Soda water: If you’re a vodka aficionado, consider mixing Crystal Head with soda water so you can taste the nuances of the different recipes with minimal interruption from the mixer.
- Tonic: For something savory that compliments the premium ingredients in Crystal Head, try tonic.
- Ginger beer: Ginger beer is a classic vodka mixer, and it’s perfect for all of Crystal Head’s vodkas, but especially Crystal Head’s spicier Aurora.
- Sour: Tonic is famous for mixing with gin, but because Ketel One has notes similar to many gins it’s a perfect tonic combination.
- Grapefruit: Grapefruit juice would pair well with either Crystal Head original or Crystal Head Aurora.
Alternatives to Crystal Head Vodka
- Monkey in Paradise Vodka: $16- Monkey in Paradise is produced from corn, like Crystal Head’s original recipe. It’s also several times distilled and filtered through charcoal, giving it a similar pure flavor to Crystal Head.
- Smirnoff Vodka: $17- Smirnoff is known to have a great flavor at a relatively low price point, so consider this instead of Crystal Head if you’d like to save a little money.
- Ocean Organic Vodka: $20: If you enjoy the agave vodka from Crystal Head, try this cane sugar organic vodka.
- Grey Goose Vodka: $29- This premium vodka is known for its superb quality. It’s French, which somehow seems to elevate anything.
- Hanson Organic Vodka: $32- This vodka, like Crystal Head, has no additives. It’s organic and sustainable, and tastes incredibly smooth.