The Best Vodka I Ever Tasted. Period.
on 02/11/11 at 10:37 amSpirits
The title above is 100% accurate, but in the interest of personal integrity, I have an admission: I do not like vodka, nor do I respect it. It is a wino’s drink, basically grain alcohol cut with water, and it is the only product in the entire realm of food and drink that I know of whose historic goal has been to be as tasteless and odorless as possible. The more times vodka is distilled, the less it tastes like anything but alcohol, which is not my opinion but rather the science of distillation. So it is ironic that the market for so-called super-premium vodkas has evolved by bragging of more distillations, triple, quadruple, quintuple, etc., as if that were a good thing.
Anyway, my feelings on vodka don’t matter, because there are lots of people out there who disagree with me. After all, vodka is far and away the most popular sprit in this country. People love vodka. Then again, McDonalds is far and away the most popular restaurant in this country.
On a more philosophical level, I love the traditions of spirit distillation, and the fact that there are usually rules, like that Scotch can only be made from barley, and rum from sugarcane, whereas vodka can be made from any ingredient in which starch can be converted to sugar, be it potatoes, wheat, rye, grass, corn, soy beans or whatever the distiller finds laying around. After all, whether like vodka or not, there is a reason why the most expensive vodkas in the world cost about the same as an entry level bottle of Scotch or a cheap bottle of champagne.
All that being said, some vodkas are better than others, and this is especially important if, like the Russians, you drink yours unadulterated.