VODKA – Is the expensive stuff worth it?
Most common question: “What do you sell the most of?” Answer: (easy) VODKA!
Second most common question: “Which is the best vodka?” Answer: Not so easy to answer!
Not only the best selling spirit here at Liquor Cabinet, vodka is the #1 seller in America – outselling rum, tequila, and gin combined.
Vodka is also the cheapest spirit to make – pennies on the dollar compared to bourbon – yet it’s sold at comparable prices. All that extra profit vodka makers are pulling in is spent on fancy bottles and advertising gimmicks.
Vodka is legally defined as flavorless and odorless – so all vodka should be the same, right?
Boy, our customers don’t think so! Vodka drinkers tend to be VERY brand loyal.
“Cheap vodka gives me a hangover.”
“Expensive vodka is smoother (i.e., doesn’t burn).”
“I don’t drink any vodka distilled less than three/five/eight times.”
So, the question remains, “Is expensive vodka better than cheap vodka?”
Depends. Actually, the words “cheap” and “expensive” are not relevant. Cheap vodka does not necessarily give you a headache…BAD vodka gives you a headache! A bad vodka is “bad” because it contains more impurities. Impurities come from inferior ingredients and stills.
While all vodka is produced in stills (majority use column stills a few small producers use pot stills), they tend to distinguish themselves by bragging about how many times they’ve run their product thru the stills. The theory being that the more time a vodka is distilled, the fewer the impurities and the smoother the final product.
In truth, test have shown that after the third time (some experts say the second), additional runs thru the still (column or pot) makes no difference – other than running up the price!
It is TRUE that chilling vodka (always store vodka in freezer) does ease the burn and dull the taste – thus making a bad vodka “taste” better.
Most experts agree that the “better” vodkas are made with potatoes which makes for a unique, creamy texture that you simply can’t get from grain-based vodka.
Different vodkas do taste different – subtle differences but different. Better vodkas are made with better equipment and better ingredients.
Vodka is meant to taste like whatever you mix it with. Therefore, it’s logical to conclude that t it’s a waste to mix expensive vodka with a fruity juice – but many of our customers will disagree!
If you drink your vodka straight, go for something at least “triple-distilled.” Other than that, let your taste buds (and not your wallet) be your guide.
FINAL ANSWER: There are some very fine vodkas available for very little money.
We are always happy to make a recommendation…if you ask…just don’t get mad at us!
Liquor Cabinet – Bay St. Louis