Whether served straight up in a martini or as part of a tropical and fruity cocktail, vodka's subtleness allows it to mix well with other liquors and ingredients. One thing about vodka that isn't so subtle, though, is its taste at room temperature. This can range from medicinal to gasoline-like, depending on the brand you are drinking. To make vodka smoother and easier to drink, you can chill it either by the individual serving or by the entire bottle.
Pour the desired amount of vodka into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. If adding anything to the vodka other than alcohol, cap the cocktail shaker and shake until the desired temperature. If you want it really cold, then cover the palm of your hand with a washcloth or towel to protect it, since the cocktail shaker will become icy. If chilling only vodka or vodka mixed with other alcohol, such as vermouth, then stir the contents of the cocktail shaker with a cocktail spoon so as not to bruise the vodka, which means dissolving air into it.
Place a bottle of vodka into a champagne bucket and fill it ¾ of the way with ice and a small amount of water. This will chill the vodka within 5 to 10 minutes. You can accelerate the process by rotating the bottle back and forth by the neck. This technique is good for bottle service and entertaining at parties.
Store a bottle of vodka in the freezer so it will always be chilled. The density and makeup is such that it will not freeze at the temperatures reached in an ordinary freezer. If do not have a cocktail shaker, you can pour the desired amount of vodka into a glass and set it in the freezer for about 2 to 5 minutes to chill it. Allow more time for larger amounts of vodka.