Grey Goose is a luxury vodka brand, produced in France, and marketed towards Americans. It is made from wheat and limestone-filtered water and is known for its distinctive frosted glass bottle. The brand was purchased by the Bacardi family in 2004 for $2 billion. In its first year, it won “World’s Best Tasting Vodka” from the Chicago Beverage Tasting Institute.
Despite being made from wheat, the extensive filtration process eliminates any traces of gluten in Grey Goose, and it is certified gluten-free by the TBB.
Grey Goose Products
Grey Goose uses a method of distilling which allows aromatics and flavors to be added to their vodka during the distillation process, setting it apart from many other flavored vodkas that add flavoring after distillation. The majority of the fruit and spices used in the Grey Goose flavoring process originate in France. In addition to their flagship vodka, the following are the flavored offerings from Grey Goose.
- Grey Goose La Poire
Probably the most famous flavored vodka from Grey Goose, Grey Goose La Poire is their pear flavored vodka. Originally conceived by Cellar Master Francois Thibault, it was inspired by pear tarts crafted by a friend of his who was a pastry chef. It is flavored with Anjou pears and bottled at 40% ABV.
- Grey Goose L’Orange
The orange flavored vodka from the Grey Goose line, L’Orange uses the extracted essence of one kilogram of oranges for every liter of vodka it produces. Bottled at 40% ABV.
- Grey Goose Le Citron
The Grey Goose citrus vodka is flavored with essential oils of lemons from the Menton region of France. It is crisp and bright as you would expect from a lemon flavored vodka. It wouldn’t hurt to use it for a high-end lemon drop. Bottled at 40% ABV.
- Grey Goose La Vanille
Grey Goose’s Vanilla flavored vodka is made using the essence of vanilla beans from Madagascar. Look for strong notes of vanilla of course, as well as toffee, caramel, and almond. This would be a great base for an espresso martini. Bottled at 40%.
- Grey Goose Le Melon
The melon for Grey Goose’s Le Melon vodka is grown in the Cavaillon region of southern France. Cavaillon Charentais melons are famous for their rich honey-like flavor and are described as a far superior version of an American cantaloupe. The melon even has its own dedicated order of knights that inspect the melons for sugar content, ripeness, flavor, size, and color. The melons are so famous that accounts of their quality date back to the 1400s, and famed author Alexandre Dumas once traded copies of his books The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers for an annual shipment of twelve melons recurring for the rest of his life. Grey Goose Le Melon uses the essence of ripe Cavaillon Charentais melons to create this summertime vodka with sweet notes of honeysuckle and juicy melon. Bottled at 40% ABV.
- Grey Goose Cherry Noir
Inspired by Clafoutis, a French baked pastry filled with black cherries, Grey Goose Cherry Noir is their Black Cherry flavored bottling. It derives its flavor from the essence of ripe french black cherries from the southern Basque region and has a juicy, rich, cherry flavor. Bottled at 40% ABV.
Grey Goose Pricing
Below are the latest Grey Goose prices.
|Type||Bottle Size||Starting Price|
|Grey Goose Vodka||200ml||$17.49|
|Grey Goose La Poire Flavored||750ml||$30.23|
|Grey Goose L'Orange Flavored||750ml||$30.81|
|Grey Goose Le Citron Flavored||750ml||$30.81|
|Grey Goose La Vanille Flavored||750ml||$29.99|
|Grey Goose Le Melon Flavored||750ml||$30.00|
|Grey Goose Cherry Noir Flavored||750ml||$30.00|
Titos is a huge name in Vodka right now, and while not marketed as a luxury brand, it is high quality. Hailing from Texas, they make gluten-free vodka using a corn distillate. Years ago, when they first became popular, the staff at my bar did a blind taste test comparing Titos, Ketel One, Grey Goose, and Stoli. Titos won in a landslide. Although the price has climbed up a few dollars since then, the quality remains the same. The only downside is they don’t make flavored vodka so for that you’ll have to stick to Goose or try another brand.
- Ketel One
Ketel One is a dutch luxury vodka named after the original still it was made in, “Ketel #1”. Ketel one launched in the 1990s however the family behind it has been making spirits for hundreds of years and had been making vodka as far back as the 1920s. Ketel One offers both traditional vodka and orange and lemon flavored vodkas and has recently launched a series of botanical flavored bottles such as mint and cucumber, peach, and orange blossom, and grapefruit and rose.
Ciroc is another brand trying to capitalize on the association of all things french with luxury and is positioned to compete directly with Grey Goose. It was created by Diageo in 2003 to try and sway luxury vodka drinkers from Goose. Distilled five times from grapes as opposed to corn or wheat, Ciroc also offers numerous flavored options to compete with Grey Goose.
The brand that originally inspired Sidney Frank to make Grey goose has been overshadowed by numerous other luxury vodkas since, and has been sold to Pernod Ricard by the Swedish government. However, they haven’t let that change what they’re doing. They’ve grown into one of the largest liquor brands on the planet and expanded their flavored offerings to include not just the usual citrus, orange, vanilla, etc but also some truly unique and exotic flavors. While they might not have the reputation for luxury that Goose has, or the fancy bottle and french ingredients, they still make a solid product at a lower price, and ultimately, if you’re drinking unflavored vodka, isn’t that what you want?
Cocktails With Grey Goose
Spiced Pear Gimlet
- 2 oz Grey Goose La Poire
- .5 oz Spiced Pear Liqueur
- .75 oz Lemon Juice
- .5 oz Vanilla simple syrup
Shake, strain into a coupe. Garnish with a lemon twist or slice of pear. Adjust the ratio of simple syrup to lemon juice for a more or less sweet/tart experience.
- 1.5 oz Grey Goose Le Melon
- 1 oz Cointreau
- .75 oz Lemon Juice
- 1 teaspoon simple syrup
Shake and strain into a coupe. Garnish with a piece of melon. As with the previous recipe, adjust the amount of lemon juice or Cointreau to tweak the sweet/sour balance to where you most enjoy it.
History and Production
While it has the elegance and style of an older brand, Grey Goose was actually created in 1996. Sidney Frank, the man who popularized Jagermeister in America, saw the success of Absolut Vodka and decided to try and carve out a niche above them on the back bar. At the time, Vodka was associated with eastern Europe and nordic countries due to brands like Smirnoff, Stoli, and Absolut. Frank created the brand with the American market in mind, conceiving of the name and bottle design before even having a recipe down. The goal was to get American drinkers to associate Grey Goose with luxury by piggybacking on the reputation of French wine, Cognac, and cooking, and thus be willing to pay a premium price for a spirit that is cheap to make and ideally flavorless. Frank then approached Francois Thibault, a French Cognac distiller, and partnered with him to create Grey Goose.
Grey Goose is made from French wheat, grown in the winter, and specially graded as “bread making” quality. It is grown, harvested, and distilled in five separate column stills in the Picardy region of France. It is then sent to Cognac, where it is filtered, blended with limestone-filtered water and bottled at 40% ABV. The process is overseen by Cellar Master Francois Thibault, who created the original Grey Goose recipe and has overseen the entire Grey Goose line since its creation.