So many people these days are trying to buy local, shopping at farmers markets or local businesses to support and invest in our local communities. Here's another way for us Floridians to buy local and support a Florida business...drink Florida CANE Vodka! Even those who don't live in Florida should give this American vodka a try if it's available in your area.
The Florida Distillery proudly makes a 100% Florida made vodka, from the South Florida sugar cane to the Florida aquifer water. Their flavored vodkas use locally grown fruits like strawberries, oranges, grapes and blueberries with unique local names.
I had the opportunity to visit The Florida Distillery in Tampa and sample the flavorsome CANE Vodka. I'm not really a vodka girl, rum is my liquor of choice, but I'll give anything a try!
Lee started us out with a delicious Florida CANE version of the Moscow Mule using Okeechobee Cherry vodka, lime juice, and ginger beer. I loved these fancy little shot glasses.
Then he moved on to straight vodka tastings. I admitted to the tasting room that I hadn't had straight vodka since I was in college. Maybe that's why I'm not a vodka girl. Anyway...most of the CANE vodkas were very smooth, going down without much burn and all were rich with flavors. We learned about the vodka making process and qualities that go into an award winning vodka taste and gem-like appearance.
Each CANE Vodka had a unique Florida name and label like Plant City Strawberry, Orlando Orange, Gator Grape, Weeki Wachee Watermelon, Beach Bum Berry, Okeechobee Cherry, Buccaneer Blueberry, Key West Lemon & Lime, and Miami Mango. Orlando Orange was my favorite flavor to drink straight. The one flavor I was very hesitant to try was Fire Ant, a jalapeno flavored vodka. I don't do spicy but I was there for the entire tasting experience so I tried a sip. That one sip set my tongue and throat on fire! I'm talking a four alarm fire, in my mouth! Fortunately, I had oyster crackers to clear my palate and quiet the flames. I thought of my husband and brother-in-law loving the CANE Fire Ant vodka in a Bloody Mary.
After tasting most of the vodkas, we moved on The Florida Distillery's new Sunshine Moonshine.
My only experience with moonshine was in New York one Christmas. All of my husband's family was together and someone brought moonshine that smelled and tasted like pure rubbing alcohol...not good.
The Florida Distillery's moonshine was quite the opposite of my New York experience, providing a smooth and delicious taste! I could drink all four of these flavors on the rocks. High Noon was my favorite with a warm cinnamon flavor. Each Sunshine Moonshine bottle had a funny, witty, and a little smart-assy, blurb on the back.
The Florida Distillery does free tastings in their tasting room. Check out their calendar for dates and times.
CANE Vodka can now be found in the Publix Liquor stores! If your Publix store doesn't have it in stock, they can order it for you because CANE is in their system.
Visit CANE Vodka on Facebook or Twitter. #DrinkLocal
Disclosure: I received a bottle of vodka and attended this tasting as part of the Tampa Bay Bloggers in exchange for my honest review. All opinions shared are my own.