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Vodka

Unquestionably a supremely popular spirit, Vodka is enjoyed around the globe thanks to its incredible versatility and, surprisingly, even its variation of flavour. Whilst typically enjoyed in the West as a means of adding spirit to mixed drinks, thanks to the superb quality and attention-to-detail found in craft Vodkas produced around the world, flavoursome premium Vodka is really burgeoning on the drinks scene.

As with anything universally popular, the origins of Vodka are hotly disputed, though most agree that its beginnings lie either in Poland or Russia. Ancient records date Vodka production in Russia centuries ago, with a number of early pharmaceutical lists referencing the “vodka of bread wine”. The earliest recorded use of the term “Vodka” was in 1405, in a set of Polish court documents in which it was placed alongside medicines and cosmetics.

In Eastern Europe and the Nordic countries, Vodka is traditionally consumed neat, differing from the Western world where it is usually mixed. The word itself derives from the Slavic “voda”, meaning water, etymologically linking the term with whisky (which comes from the Gaelic “uisge beatha”, the Scandinavian term Akvavit from the Latin “aqua vitae” and French “eau-de-vie” - all meaning water of life). It seems that a great number of spirits from around the world were once thought to be elixirs of life, containing mystical properties. Prior to the 1950s, Vodka was very rarely drunk outside of Europe, but thanks to its easily mixed flavour profile (and appearance), by 1975 sales of Vodka in America had surpassed those of bourbon.

Plain Vodka

Often fairly neutral in flavour, many commercial Vodkas can be mixed with pretty much anything. This is often due to numerous distillations and filtrations which popular vodkas (such as Smirnoff or Russian Standard) undergo, with advertising campaigns regularly flaunting a particular Vodka as being the “purest”.

Here at Master of Malt, however, we like our Vodka to be complex and bursting with flavour, and Vodka really can do both. It all begins with the base ingredient.

Poland, one of the motherlands of Vodka, tends to use either rye or potatoes. Popular rye vodkas include Belvedere or Wyborowa, and are notable for their bread-like sweetness and hints of spice. Potato vodkas on the other hand (brands such as Luksusowa, Chopin, or the English brand, Chase) tend to have a creamy, buttery, grainy character.

Scandinavian and Russian vodkas tend to be distilled from cereal grains such as wheat or barley. Sweden’s Absolut, for example, is a wheat vodka with a soft aniseed-like flavour with a little spice. For barley vodka, Finlandia, produced in Finland, offers nutty flavours and lasting spice.

For something completely different, France’s Ciroc is actually made of grapes, and is a rounded, fruity spirit.

Flavoured Vodka

Nowadays, the use of quality flavouring ingredients such as fruit and spice result in a variety of fine flavoured vodkas which allow for numerous fascinating and delicious mixed drinks.

For splendid examples of fruit-flavoured vodkas, try Davna Cherry Vodka or some of the fruity spirits in the English Vodka Company’s range.

For spicy vodka, Absolut Peppar works nicely in cocktails, or, if you’re feeling truly brave, have a sip of the exceedingly hot Naga Chilli Vodkas from The ‘Hot Enough’ Vodka Company.

Vodka

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Distilling his vodka a whopping 14 times and filtering it twice was Dr. Kauffman's way to fulfil his aspirations of making a truly excellent spirit. This edition is titled Hard because it's more...  More info
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Blavod was created with the thought that you can choose to have your coffee either white or black, why should the same not apply to vodka? The result is this black vodka, distilled from molasses. The...  More info
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Imperia is a premium vodka from Russian Standard. This is filtered through quartz and charcoal for exceptional purity.  More info
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Made with real gold flakes and contained in a gorgeous bottle that's meant to look like the peak of an alpine mountain, Studer Swiss Gold Vodka is absolutely beautiful. It's the sort of thing you...  More info
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Sipsmith Barley Vodka
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Produced in the workshop previously used by the late, great Michael Jackson (whisky writer, not Moonwalker), this superb vodka is distilled from English Barley. Distilled in a marvellously compact pot...  More info
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A jeroboam (three litres) of this iconic quadruple-distilled Polish vodka, and if that wasn't enough if you press a button on the base of this massive bottle it illuminates allowing this vodka to...  More info
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A tasty rose petal flavoured Polish vodka, Lanique vodka is made using Attar of Rose, which, pound for pound, is worth more than gold! They make this to a 150 year old recipe, and the result tastes a...  More info
$40.82
The 5th batch of Chase Rhubarb Vodka, made by adding rhubarb for the final distillation and macerating it in the final distillate to give it a wonderful pink colour.  More info
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$70.84
A wonderful vodka from Blackwoods, this is triple distilled over Nordic Birch charcoal and is also the first vodka ever to be "ice-filtered". It's how they distil it - ice cold, no mistakes. This...  More info
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Potocki Vodka
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A Polish Rye Vodka - very smooth, but not to the point of flavourlessness (is that even a word?). The producers recommend drinking the vodka Chilled but not Frozen in order to preserve the more...  More info
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Beluga Goldline
(70cl, 40%)
While regular Beluga Vodka is filtered 3 times, the Russian distillers go the extra mile with Beluga Goldline and filter it 5 times! Beluga Goldline also comes with a wax-sealed bottle and a hammer...  More info
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Pincer Vodka
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A nicely packaged vodka, Pincer is infused with the flavours of Wild Elderflower, and Milk Thistle. The result is a creamy, herbal vodka, made with Scottish mountain water. The spirit has been diluted...  More info
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$38.61
Smirnoff Blue
(70cl, 45%)
A super premium vodka from Smirnoff. Blue is triple distilled and beautifully presented.  More info
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$33.95
Russian Standard
(70cl, 40%)
Russian Standard vodka has been distilled to the Tsar's "premium quality standard" since 1894. It is a classic Russian vodka.  More info
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$25.59
A limited edition of 3000 bottles, this raspberry vodka is created with local Pixley raspberries, harvested as late as possible in order to extract as much natural sweetness as possible. They are...  More info
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This English vodka is flavoured by infusing and also re-distilling the vodka with Colombian coffee beans to create a vodka with a distinct coffee aroma and flavour.  More info
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Made to the recipe of a 500 year old witches potion from the Czech Republic, Babicka is a blend of vodka flavoured with wormwood and various herbs. It is named after 16th Century Czechoslovakian...  More info
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A limited edition salted caramel flavour bottling of Element 29, a British wheat vodka made with no filtration, only multiple distillations allowing its unique natural purity to shine through. The...  More info
$59.54
English Spirit Vodka
(70cl, 37.50%)
This very small batch vodka is made in Cambridgeshire by the the chaps at the English Vodka Company. Their still, named Fanny, is dinky, just 200 litres, and this allows the distillers to closely...  More info
$40.90
A delicious pure-tasting Polish rye vodka, Belvedere is distilled four times! This giant 6 litre bottle comes with a light in it which is very cool. We've also included a picture of Brandy, the...  More info
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$467.53
A special edition bottling of Belvedere premium vodka, who have teamed up with (RED) to raise proceeds for the Global Fund which finances programs to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa.

50% of the profits...  More info
Ciroc Peach
(70cl, 37.50%)
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ATOM Supplies Ltd trading as Master of Malt. Registered office: North House, 198 High Street, Tonbridge, TN9 1BE. Registered in England & Wales. Company number 3193057, VAT number GB 662241553.