Jean Marc XO was suggested by a reader several months ago. While I was on a trip to Chicago, I happened to find a bottle and decided to give it a go. Interestingly, this vodka is hand-crafted and has the marks to show for it on the back of the neck of the vodka. Historically, vodkas with numbered batches have been iffy, but the clerk at the liquor store seemed impressed enough that I was purchasing it.
Jean Marc XO is great. The flavor in the mouth is unlike other vodkas I’ve had. The taste itself isn’t pleasurable like, say, a flavored vodka would be, but it’s incredibly palatable. Upon swallowing, there is no real burn to speak of, and any aftertaste quickly fades away.
This vodka is two firsts for me. First, I accidentally poured a mouthful, and I was able to swallow in “bites” as though it were a large drink of diet soda (instead of vodka) without getting a queasy feeling. Second, I actually forgot I drank it because the vodka left my mouth feeling as fresh as it was before I drank it. What I mean to say is that this is the easiest to drink vodka I’ve ever had.
The Mixed Drink
I mixed Jean Marc XO with orange juice and Red Bull. There was a flavor I couldn’t quite pinpoint. After discussing it with Erin, we decided the vodka provided an extra coconut or vanilla flavor. This is a great mixing vodka that actually adds to the flavor of the mixed drink. This is rare to find.
Erin put Jean Marx XO through its paces. She thought it was a really great mixer, and pointed out to me the mixed drink almost tasted like it was mixed with Malibu Rum instead of vodka. She handled the shot really well, too. She said it taste like when she accidentally gets perfume in her mouth, but she said it wasn’t bad straight since it didn’t burn.
Jean Marc XO is a wonderful vodka. Unfortunately, the price, at least the price I paid, was a little too high for my tastes. It does, however, knock the socks clean off other French vodkas and is easily one of the top two vodkas I’ve had the pleasure of drinking.