written by
Bert Gallagher

Crystal Skull Vodka: Unveiling the Mystique and Taste

Brands of Vodka 13 min read

Crystal Head Vodka is a unique and distinctive brand of vodka that has captured the attention of consumers worldwide. Conceived and founded by actor Dan Aykroyd and artist John Alexander in September 2008, the brand is manufactured by Globefill Inc. in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. The vodka's packaging, a skull-shaped bottle, has become an iconic symbol that sets it apart from its competitors. However, it's not just the appearance that makes Crystal Head stand out; the production process and quality of the vodka itself are equally impressive.

This premium vodka is quadruple-distilled and filtered seven times for absolute purity. The distillation process uses high-quality Canadian corn, creating a clean, clear, and colorless spirit that is both gluten-free and kosher-certified. On the palate, Crystal Head Vodka offers a silky smooth texture with a hint of sweetness and a touch of vanilla, culminating in a sweet and creamy finish.

Over the years, Crystal Head Vodka has collected numerous awards and accolades, including gold medals at the World Spirits competition in San Francisco and Moscow's Prod Expo. It's evident that the brand's dedication to quality and innovation extends beyond its eye-catching bottle design and into its exceptional product. This vodka's remarkable journey from its inception by a Hollywood actor to a globally recognized spirit makes it an intriguing subject worth exploring further.

Crystal Skull Vodka

History and Founders

Dan Aykroyd

Dan Aykroyd, a Canadian actor, and comedian is well-known for his work in the entertainment industry, particularly for his roles in Ghostbusters and The Blues Brothers. Alongside his success in film and television, he co-founded the popular music venue chain, House of Blues. In 2008, Aykroyd decided to venture into the spirits industry, driven by a passion for additive-free vodka and a fascination with the legend of the thirteen crystal skulls.

John Alexander

John Alexander, an accomplished artist, is the creative mastermind behind the iconic skull-shaped bottle design. He shares Aykroyd's fascination with the crystal skull legend and has collaborated with him in creating Crystal Head Vodka. Alexander's work has been widely exhibited at prestigious institutions like the Corcoran Gallery of Art and the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., as well as the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston.

Together, Aykroyd and Alexander conceived Crystal Head Vodka with a mission to provide a pure, additive-free spirit in a unique, symbolic bottle. The brand sources its water from Newfoundland, Canada, which is known for its purity. The result is a multi-award-winning vodka that appeals to those seeking quality and creativity. The limited-edition, hand-decorated John Alexander art bottle was launched in 2018 as an homage to the designer's contributions to the brand.

Crystal Skull Vodka Production


Crystal Head Vodka uses locally sourced, Canadian corn as its primary ingredient, particularly a type called peaches and cream corn. This corn variety contributes to the vodka's unique taste profile. Coupled with Newfoundland water, known for its pristine quality, these two ingredients form the base of Crystal Head Vodka.

Distillation and Filtration

The vodka undergoes a distillation process four times, transforming it into a neutral grain spirit. It is then blended with the Newfoundland water. To achieve its high level of purity, the mixture is filtered seven times. On three of these occasions, Herkimer diamond crystals are used for filtration, giving the vodka its signature clarity.

Crystal Head Vodka is also kosher and additive-free, setting it apart from other vodka brands in the market.

Bottle Design

Perhaps the most recognizable feature of Crystal Head Vodka is its skull-shaped bottle, made by Bruni Glass. This crystal skull bottle is inspired by the mysterious 13 crystal skulls allegedly found across Central and South America. The bottle design also incorporates elements from the Mexican Day of the Dead celebration.

The distinctive packaging not only serves as a conversation starter but also showcases the attention to detail and commitment to quality that goes into producing Crystal Head Vodka.

In summary, Crystal Head Vodka combines premium ingredients, a meticulous production process, and a striking bottle design to create a unique and premium vodka experience.

Varieties and Special Editions

Crystal Head Aurora

Crystal Head Aurora is a special edition of the ultra-premium Crystal Head Vodka, featuring a unique, iridescent skull-shaped bottle design inspired by the Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights. This premium vodka is crafted using high-quality wheat from North Yorkshire, England, and pristine Newfoundland water. The liquid undergoes a distillation and filtration process that sets it apart from its original counterpart, resulting in a drier, bolder, and spicier profile. The Aurora edition's suggested retail price is around $63.99.

Some key features of Crystal Head Aurora include:

  • Bottle design: Iridescent finish, resembling the Aurora Borealis
  • Base ingredient: North Yorkshire wheat
  • Distillation: Quadruple-distilled
  • Filtration: Filtered seven times
  • Tasting notes: Dry, bold, and spicy

Crystal Head Onyx

Crystal Head Onyx is another exquisite limited edition produced by Crystal Head Vodka, boasting a distinctive, deep black, and transparent Onyx-inspired bottle. This exclusive vodka is made from Blue Weber Agave sourced from a single farm in Mexico, providing a distinctive flavor profile. The liquid goes through the same meticulous quadruple-distillation and seven-stage filtration process to ensure its unparalleled smoothness. The Onyx edition can be found starting at the price of $55.99.

Noteworthy attributes of Crystal Head Onyx are:

  • Bottle design: Onyx-inspired, black and transparent finish
  • Base ingredient: Blue Weber Agave
  • Distillation: Quadruple-distilled
  • Filtration: Filtered seven times
  • Tasting notes: Smooth, with subtleties of agave

In summary, Crystal Head Vodka offers two exceptional limited editions: Aurora and Onyx. Both editions maintain the brand's commitment to delivering a pure spirit without adding glycol, citrus oils, or raw sugars, while simultaneously offering exclusive flavor profiles and artistic bottle designs.

Awards and Recognitions

Crystal Head Vodka has been a recipient of numerous awards and accolades since its inception in 2008. The ultra-premium vodka brand, founded by actor Dan Aykroyd and artist John Alexander, has won prestigious awards from various international spirits competitions.

At the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, a highly regarded event in the world of spirits, Crystal Head Vodka has consistently garnered recognition. The competition, which has been running since 2000, prides itself on employing a panel of experienced and impartial judges who blind taste entries from around the world.

In 2011, Crystal Head Vodka was awarded a Double Gold Medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, a testament to its exceptional quality and taste. This award is reserved for spirits that have received unanimous Gold Medal scores from all the judges. Such recognition is a significant accomplishment and sets Crystal Head Vodka apart from its competitors.

Despite the brand's association with the iconic Indiana Jones film series, which featured a crystal skull, Crystal Head Vodka has managed to create its own niche in the spirits industry. This is due to its quadruple-distillation process and filtration through Herkimer diamonds, resulting in an incredibly pure and smooth vodka.

Some additional notable accolades for Crystal Head Vodka include:

  • Gold Medal at the 2020 SIP Awards for their Aurora expression, a premium product showcasing the purity and flavor of the vodka.
  • Gold Medal at the 2020 International Spirits Challenge, a rigorous competition evaluating more than 1,700 entries from nearly 70 countries.

In summary, Crystal Head Vodka's numerous awards and recognitions speak to the brand's dedication to producing high-quality, ultra-premium vodka. With its distinct Crystal Skull bottle and commitment to purity, the brand continues to impress consumers and industry experts alike.

Cocktails and Serving Suggestions

Crystal Head Vodka is a versatile spirit that can be enjoyed in various cocktails and classic drinks. In this section, we will explore some popular serving suggestions for Crystal Head Vodka, including martinis and cocktails.


A classic martini is a perfect way to highlight the smooth and pure taste of Crystal Head Vodka. Enjoy an OG Martini with the following recipe:

  • 2 oz Crystal Head Vodka
  • 1/2 oz dry vermouth
  • ice
  • green olives or lemon twist for garnish
  1. Fill a mixing glass with ice.
  2. Add Crystal Head Vodka and dry vermouth.
  3. Stir well, then strain into a chilled martini glass.
  4. Garnish with olives or a lemon twist.


Apart from martinis, there is a wide variety of cocktails that can be made using Crystal Head Vodka. Here are some popular options:

1. Crystal Head Brain Freeze

  • 2 oz Crystal Head Vodka
  • 1 oz lime juice
  • 1 oz simple syrup
  • ice
  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Add vodka, lime juice, and simple syrup.
  3. Shake well and strain into a glass filled with ice.

2. Crystal Head Bubble Head

  • 2 oz Crystal Head Vodka
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • soda water
  • ice
  • lemon wheel for garnish
  1. Fill a glass with ice.
  2. Add vodka and lemon juice.
  3. Top with soda water and garnish with a lemon wheel.

3. Crystal Head Cranium

This is an exciting cocktail that showcases the unique features of Crystal Head Vodka. To prepare this drink, follow the steps below:

  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Add vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and a dash of grenadine.
  3. Shake well and strain into a chilled glass.

Experimenting with Crystal Head Vodka in various cocktails can lead to discovering delicious new flavor combinations. Keep in mind not to overcomplicate the drinks, as the pure taste of the vodka should still shine through.

Mythology and Symbolism

Crystal Skulls Legend

The Crystal Skulls Legend has been the subject of fascination for centuries. These skulls are believed to have been carved by ancient civilizations such as the Mayan, Aztec, and Navajo. They were thought to wield great power, with some claiming they had healing abilities and could align planetary energies to create positivity. The legend has even inspired popular culture, leading to the creation of the film Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, directed by Steven Spielberg.

Mexican Day of the Dead

Another significant cultural reference in relation to Crystal Head Vodka is the Mexican Day of the Dead. This annual event is a time when families gather to honor and remember deceased loved ones. Skulls, often made from sugar or clay, are a central symbol used in the celebration. The iconic skull design signifies the duality of life and death, reminding us of our mortality and celebrating the lives of those who have passed away.

13 Crystal Skulls

The 13 Crystal Skulls are an essential part of the mythology surrounding Crystal Skulls. According to the legend, there are 13 ancient crystal skulls across the globe, and when all 13 come together, they will reveal a profound universal truth or be the key to mankind's salvation. This legend has captured the imagination of many, including actor Dan Aykroyd and artist John Alexander, who were inspired by the story when developing their own brand, Crystal Head Vodka.

Price and Availability

Crystal Head Vodka is available in several bottle sizes, often found at local liquor stores and online retailers. Some of the most commonly found sizes are:

  • 50ml (Single)
  • 750ml (Single)
  • 1.75L (Single)

The prices for these bottles can vary depending on the location and retailer. Generally, the price range for Crystal Head Vodka is as follows:

  • 50ml: Around $5
  • 750ml: Ranging from $29.99 to $47.99
  • 1.75L: Approximately $100 and above

There are also limited edition bottles available, such as Crystal Head Vodka Pride, Crystal Head Vodka Onyx, and Crystal Head Vodka Aurora. The prices for these limited editions are:

  • Crystal Head Vodka Pride: Starting at $54.99
  • Crystal Head Vodka Onyx: Starting at $55.99
  • Crystal Head Vodka Aurora: Starting at $63.99

These products can be found at various online retailers, such as ReserveBar, Drizly, and Total Wine & More. The availability can vary depending on location, store inventory, and delivery options. It's essential to check with your local liquor store or preferred online retailer for accurate and up-to-date pricing information.

Please note that depending on your location, shipping restrictions may apply, particularly for international orders or certain states in the United States. Always verify the shipping and delivery policies of the retailer before making a purchase.

Related Spirits


Tequila is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from the blue agave plant, primarily in the region around the city of Tequila, Mexico. It is typically aged in oak barrels, which gives it a golden color and distinct flavor profile. Common categories of tequila include:

  • Blanco: unaged or aged for up to 2 months
  • Reposado: aged for 2 to 12 months
  • Añejo: aged for 1 to 3 years
  • Extra Añejo: aged for more than 3 years

Tequila, like Crystal Head Vodka, often showcases unique packaging designs, but the main focus is on the spirit's taste and quality.


Rum is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from sugarcane byproducts such as molasses, which gives it its distinctive sweet flavor. It is aged in oak barrels, and that allows variations in flavor depending on the length of aging and type of barrel used. Rum types include:

  • White Rum: lighter flavor, aged briefly or not at all
  • Gold Rum: aged in oak barrels for a stronger flavor
  • Dark Rum: aged for several years, with stronger flavors and darker color
  • Spiced Rum: infused with spices or caramel

Rum, like Crystal Head Vodka, emphasizes the importance of the distillation process and quality of ingredients used.


Bourbon is a type of American whiskey, primarily made from corn and aged in new, charred oak barrels. By law, bourbon must be made in the United States, and it is mainly produced in Kentucky. Bourbon shares similarities with Crystal Head Vodka in terms of craftsmanship and dedication to purity. Some classifications of bourbon include:

  • Straight Bourbon: aged for at least 2 years, no added flavors or colors
  • Small Batch Bourbon: a blend of select barrels for a unique flavor profile
  • Single Barrel Bourbon: whiskey from a single barrel, not blended with any others


Champagne is a sparkling wine that originates from the Champagne region of France. It is made primarily from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier grape varieties. Similar to Crystal Head Vodka, Champagne is known for its high quality, unique production process, and iconic bottle designs. Champagne categories can be divided into:

  • Non-vintage: blends from multiple years, making a consistent taste
  • Vintage: made from grapes harvested in a single year
  • Prestige Cuvée: the top-of-the-range offering from a champagne house

By comparing Crystal Head Vodka with related spirits like tequila, rum, bourbon, and champagne, it is easier to understand the shared emphasis on quality, craftsmanship, and dedication to creating a unique and enjoyable experience for the consumer.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the alcohol content?

Crystal Head Vodka has an alcohol content of 40% ABV (alcohol by volume). This is a standard percentage for many types of vodka in the market.

Is the bottle real crystal?

While the bottle is designed to resemble a crystal skull, it is actually made of glass. The intricate design has made the bottle recognizable and a unique selling point for the brand.

Why is it so expensive?

Crystal Head Vodka is considered a premium spirit due to its high-quality ingredients and production process. The vodka is made from locally sourced Canadian corn and then distilled four times. It is filtered seven times, with three of those filtrations being through layers of semi-precious Herkimer diamonds. The unique packaging and attention to detail in the production process contribute to its higher price.

How does it compare to other premium vodkas?

When compared to other premium vodkas, Crystal Head Vodka holds its own in terms of taste and quality. Its quadruple-distillation process and multiple filtrations result in a pure and smooth taste. However, personal taste preferences may vary, and some may prefer other premium vodkas based on factors like flavor or mouthfeel.

Are there different varieties?

Yes, there are different varieties of Crystal Head Vodka. The original is made from Canadian corn, while another version, Crystal Head Aurora, is made from English wheat. Aurora offers a slightly different taste profile, with some spiciness and warm, crisp notes.

Is there a tequila version?

Currently, there is no tequila version of Crystal Head. The brand focuses specifically on crafting high-quality vodka using their unique production process and signature skull-shaped bottle.