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Ketel One vs Tito’s Vodka: Which is Better? (2022 Updated)

Last Updated on October 13, 2022 by Lydia Martin

There are plenty of great, high-quality vodkas on the market since premium vodka has exploded in popularity. In this article, we’ll compare two of the most popular vodka brands – Ketel One vs Tito’s. 

Knowing their differences in origin, flavor, distillation, and price comparison will help you decide which is a better choice. Read on and take a closer look.

Comparing Ketel One & Tito’s Vodkas

bottle of Ketel One and Titos on a wooden table

Vodka brands like Ketel One and Tito’s are considered popular premium vodka brands in the market. The debate between the two has been long-standing, but there are factors to consider regarding which one is the best.

Ketel is 80-proof and uses wheat as its main ingredient, while Tito’s is also 80-proof but uses high-quality yellow corn. Both have avid fan drinkers who love the superiority of one over the other.

Key Differences 

History & Origin

Ketel One vodka was made in the Netherlands by the Nolet family in the 17th century.

A family legacy of Dutch distillers currently runs the company in its 11th generation. Its name originated from the original coal-fired copper still used to distill it, Distilleerketel #1.

On the other hand, Tito’s Handmade Vodka is made in Texas and was founded by Tito Beveridge in 1997. Originally, it was created after Beveridge made an infusion of inexpensive vodka as gifts using a pot still.

Production & Distillation Process

column still distillery

Ketel One uses carefully selected European wheat in a modern and traditional distilling technique. It undergoes a column distillation, producing a fresh, lively, ultra-wheat spirit.

It is re-distilled in ten copper pot stills, filtered over the original coal-fired copper pot, and rests in tile-lined tanks until it is ready.

Meanwhile, Tito’s Handmade Vodka is made by batch distill from corn using old-fashioned pot stills. It is distilled six times and filtered through activated charcoal which absorbs impurities and gives a smooth finish.

Base Ingredients

One of the largest differences lies in vodka’s base mash bill or ingredient. Ketel One is crafted from GMO-free winter wheat from Europe. These wheat-based vodkas are light, slightly sweet, clean, and crisp.

On the other hand, Tito’s Handmade Vodka is made of corn, making it full-bodied, soft, and sweet. The corn is non-GMO and is locally harvested for the brand.

Tasting Notes: 

Ketel One 

Palate: It hits the tongue with a round, smooth texture and is a little toasty and grainy sweetness from the wheat.

Nose: Fresh hint of citrus, sweet herbs, and honey with a subtle sweet wheat aroma.

Color: It has a crystal-clear color feature.

Finish: A long yet soft finish with lingering notes.

Titos

Palate: It has a thick feel on the tongue with a mix of sweet and buttery notes.

Nose: Rich in grainy aromas with peppery notes.

Color: It has a crystal-clear color feature.

Finish: A slick, smooth, and clean finish.

Price Point & Value

Ketel One Vodka is more expensive than Tito’s Handmade Vodka. It has been compared similarly with higher ends like Grey Goose because of its wheat base ingredients.

A 1.75L of Ketel One is around $43.34, while Tito’s has about $36.00. Price is used a lot of time to reflect quality. However, the costs of importing the spirit might reflect its price because Ketel One is produced in the Netherlands.

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Ownership & Distillery

Ketel One is a family-run business by a French Huguenot refugee, the Nolet family, and was produced in Nolet Distillery.

In 2008, Ketel One entered a 50-50 partnership with Diageo. Now it’s in its 11th family generation with Bob and Carl Nolet, Jr. [1]

Tito’s Handmade Vodka is made by the Fifth Generation, founded by Tito Beveridge. Its commercial production began in 1997 in its Mockingbird Distiller, which expanded in 2008 in its southeast Austin distillery.

Currently, Fifth Generation is still the owner and manufacturer of Tito’s.

How to Drink It

pouring vodka on a glass

Ketel One and Tito’s are premium vodka brands that can be drunk straight. Their quality distilling process produces smooth vodka like Ketel One, which makes it good to drink neat.

Meanwhile, Tito’s versatility can be enjoyed as your go-to mixer in your favorite vodka cocktails.

Price Comparison Chart

BrandSizeAlcohol ProofAverage Price
Ketel One1.75L40% ABVAround $43.34
Tito’s1.75L40% ABVAround $36.00

*Average price is based on Drizly. Prices may vary in local liquor shops.

Do Ketel One and Tito’s Have Similarities? 

Yes, Ketel One and Tito’s have similarities. Both have 40% ABV or 80-proof because all vodkas tend to have a standard alcohol content of 40%.

Also, they have the same crystal-clear color features.

FAQs

Are Ketel One and Tito’s gluten-free?

Yes, Ketel One and Tito’s are gluten-free. According to FDA, all distilled spirits made from gluten-containing grains can be labeled gluten-free.

The FDA ruling acknowledges that the distillation process will remove gluten and its final distilled product. [2]

Is Tito’s or Ketel One better?

In terms of price point, Tito’s Handmade Vodka is better, especially when you prefer it as a cocktail mixer. Since Ketel One is more expensive, the price point of Ketel One makes Tito’s a favorable and preferred vodka mixer.

Which vodka is smoother, Ketel One or Tito’s?

Ketel One is smoother than Tito’s because it is made of wheat instead of corn. Wheat-based vodkas like Ketel One are considered light and smooth, which are better on the rocks since it goes down smoothly.

Final Thoughts 

The battle comparison of Ketel One and Tito’s is tight because they’re both great options for vodka. Overall, Tito’s is more favorable in terms of price and is better for mixing since it is more affordable. But if you prefer to sip a smooth vodka, go for Ketel One.

Despite their base and production differences, Ketel One and Tito’s are equally delicious. So, whether sipped or mixed in cocktails, each of its unique flavors and signature smoothness is an excellent choice of vodka.

References:

  1. https://www.cnbc.com/2015/11/27/ketel-one-making-vodka-for-the-long-haul.html 
  2. https://www.fda.gov/food/food-labeling-nutrition/questions-and-answers-gluten-free-food-labeling-final-rule 

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