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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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Origin Gin
Maple Whiskey Liqueur
Smooth Ambler Distillery
Mature Your Own Kit
Blend Your Own Whisky
Balcones Whisky Distillery
Ciroc Coconut
(70cl, 37.50%)
The fresh, clear taste of Ciroc premium vodka, made with grapes that get harvested when they're frozen and distilled five times, mixed with the exotic flavours of coconut and a subtle hint of tropical...  More info
$44.53
Belvedere Pure Vodka
(70cl, 40%)
Polish Vodka distilled from only one particular strain of Rye. Absolutely smashing on its own, but this really does make a marvelous Vodka Martini.  More info
$46.58
Belvedere Vodka 6l
(60cl, 40%)
A massive 6 litre bottle of the beautiful Polish vodka, Belvedere, four times distilled from Polish rye. Very handsome, and perfect for any big parties! For scale purposes, we've included Brandy, the...  More info
$490.27
The 100 proof version of Stolichnaya's vodka. Despite being so strong it still retains a surprising level of smoothness.  More info
$33.27
Smirnoff Red 3l
(300cl, 37.50%)
A full three litres of Smirnoff Red label. Behold its majesty, marvel at its size. This is the world's bestselling vodka, and it is thrice distilled and ten times filtered.  More info
$104.82
Absolut Wild Tea
(70cl, 40%)
A stupendous flavoured Swedish vodka from the Absolut company, this stuff is made with Chinese oolong tea and Swedish Elderflowers. The result is herbal and fragrant and wonderful in a variety of...  More info
$28.18
A delicious Polish vodka, this is made with Raspberries and Blackcurrants and a hint of rose petals. They make Belvedere Black Raspberry by taking flavours from the peels, the juice and the flowers…  More info
$49.10
The premium version of best-selling Russian Standard Vodka.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$28.92
Stolichnaya Red Label
(70cl, 40%)
The classic Stolichnaya Red Label vodka, filtered three times, once with quartz, then charcoal and then quartz again for a pure but original flavour profile.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$24.80
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
$248.93
A very stylish gift pack of U'Luvka Polish Vodka, made with rye, barley and wheat. Alongside the uniquely shaped bottle, there are two handsome glasses which have no bases, harking back to an old...  More info
$62.26
Pinky Vodka
(70cl, 40%)
Pinky Vodka is a beautifully packaged vodka flavoured with rose petals, violets and wild strawberries.  More info
$45.79
Rhubarb Vodka from Lyle Organics made solely from the organic rhubarb they grow themselves near Loch Ness. No fruit concentrates, colouring or artificial sweeteners are used. Try it over ice or in a...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (1.0/5)
$30.03
Ciroc Vodka 1l
(100cl, 40%)
A stunning French vodka, which comes with a hearty recommendation from none other than P Diddy (off of that P Diddy and the Fam), so you know it's good. This lovely spirit is distilled from grapes...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
$62.70
Grey Goose L'Orange
(70cl, 40%)
French vodka flavoured with the essence of the orange. This is made with Champagne limestone filtered water. In 2001 this was awarded gold at the Beverage Packaging Global Award. They were right to...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$55.66
Absolut Peppar
(50cl, 40%)
Very spicy and full bodied pepper vodka from Sweden. Made with pure, creamy Absolut vodka, Absolut Peppar makes a corking Bloody Mary.  More info
$20.27
The newest addition to the Davina Hani Polish vodka family is a sweet young fellow that was built in part by bees. That's right. The Linden honey which makes this flavoured vodka so sweet was made by...  More info
$28.85
Belvedere Pink Grapefruit is made with real fruit, and pure Polish vodka. The result is a crisp, flavousome fruit vodka, released in 2010.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$49.10
Absolut Vanilia
(70cl, 40%)
A lovely fresh and clean vanilla flavoured vodka. Absolut Vanilia has a rich, buttery flavour with hints of cocoa and plenty of fresh vanilla.  More info
$29.50
Koskenkorva 013 Vodka
(70cl, 40%)
Made using continuous distillation, the spirit used from Koskenkorva 013 is said to be distilled over 250 times(!) before it is bottled. As you can imagine, this creates an exceedingly high quality...  More info
$36.04
A superbly sippable vodka from Londson distillers, Sipsmith. Made with a base of English wheat in their 300 litre copper-pot still, charmingly called Prudence, this vodka makes a mightily mean Vesper...  More info
$44.28
Skyy Premium Vodka
(70cl, 40%)
A premium vodka from America, this is distilled using four column stills, before undergoing a triple filtration. Skyy is made with Californian water.  More info
$30.51
Grey Goose Magnum
(150cl, 40%)
A magnum of delicious Grey Goose vodka, made with French wheat from La Beauce which is distilled in a five step process with artesian spring water which is filtered through Champagne limestone.  More info
$152.66
Ultimat Vodka
(70cl, 40%)
This was once famous for being the most expensive vodka out there (so you know it's good!), Ultimat is packaged in a handmade cobalt blue crystal bottle, and it tastes sublime…  More info
$68.14
Pincer Vodka
(70cl, 38%)
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
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$36.95
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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.