Vodka’s usefulness isn’t limited to cocktails. Vodka is made from alcohol that is created by fermenting some sort or high starch or sugar plant matter with yeast. The spirit can be mixed into whatever my friends and I have a taste for that night, whether that be a fruity punch, spicy Moscow mule or something infused with fresh herbs. Vodka can also be made from fruit, like grapes, and sugar cane. Home Recipes Dishes & Beverages Beverages. While the United States’ ABV minimum is 40%, the European Union’s is 37.5%, allowing the water content to be slightly higher. Depending on the purity of the water used, some vodkas need to be filtered before they’re bottled. Fruit vodkas often result in a higher proof than their grain and potato-based brethren, mostly due to the high amount of sugar that’s available to be converted into precious alcohol. dried lavender, fresh lemon juice, water, fresh mint, fresh ginger and 3 more. While some brands of vodka, like Devil Spring and Balkan 176°, have an ABV of up to 88%, they’re intended to be diluted by the consumer before ingesting, like Everclear and other rectified spirits. As an Associate Digital Editor, Caroline writes and edits all things food-related and helps produce videos for Taste of Home. Since it uses fruit and it's not aged, were it not for the higher proof to which it's distilled, it could actually be called an eau de vie (unaged brandy). Once the alcohol is created, the raw spirit is distilled, diluted and filtered to make vodka. Not all turn to multiple distillations, though. According to the United States’ Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, vodka is a “neutral spirit distilled or treated after distillation with charcoal or other materials so as to be without distinctive character, aroma, taste or color,” which is “bottled at not less than 40% alcohol by volume (ABV).”, In more basic terms, vodka is water mixed with ethanol until it reaches a proof of 80, and no less. This additional step, again, affects the vodka’s overall characteristics including the nose, palate and finish. Corn: Prairie Organic Vodka ($22) Prairie’s organic, GMO-free vodka is made by Phillips Distilling … This process also removes the water that was added earlier, greatly increasing its ABV. Potato Vodka: How complicated can a spirit that goes with everything even be, right? Hints of burnt sugar and toffee also lie just beneath the surface. Despite its unmatched versatility, I’d never really given vodka’s background much of thought. Grain- and potato-based vodkas tend to have a more neutral profile than fruit- and sugar-based vodkas and are the traditional way to produce the spirit. If the plant matter used is heavy in starch, enzymes are also added to first convert the starch into sugar for the yeast to eat. You can definitely taste the apples, but it's quite a dry and rich flavor—think cider, not juice. The most common types of plant matter used are cereal grains, like wheat, corn, rye or potatoes. Vodka is made through a process that involves fermentation, distillation, dilution and filtration. Keep reading for an in-depth look at how and what vodka is made of. From there, the raw spirit is distilled to purify it and filter out any unwanted elements that would affect the product’s flavor, texture or overall characteristics. After all, vodka comes from the old Slavic word voda, which translates to “little water.” The typical ABV for vodka is 40%, making the water content around 60% and resulting in an 80-proof spirit. When making vodka from grains and potatoes, a mash must be made that contains active enzymes that break down the starches from the grains or potatoes and makes fermentable sugars. Finally, the vodka is bottled and shipped to be imbibed around the world. Many brands distill their vodka multiple times to create, what they believe, is the highest quality product possible. Palate and finish for these surprise uses. ) dried lavender, fresh and... Bit of time, resources and energy go into each bottle of vodka at how and what is... Everclear, which may differ from actual selling prices in your freezer unconverted are what give vodkas! Flavored vodkas are generally considered superior our favorite ways to cook with vodka are what give vodkas! 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