How Is Vodka Different From Other Spirits
Oct 19, 2020
What makes vodka different from other spirits? Why is vodka mix-it-all drink while none of the spirits are? These are various familiar questions that come to our minds that remain unanswered and vague. Here is cracking open the shell and answering your question – How Is Vodka Different From Other Spirits.
Vodka is entirely different from the rest of the spirits. Be it in taste, formation, or use and yet is still termed as spirit. It’s the most different spirit among all other spirits because of its composition (which is also a reason it is drunk neat and pure). In contrast, other spirits like tequila, rum, whiskey, or gin contain various other flavors.
What Is A Spirit?
A spirit is defined as an alcoholic drink made from grains/vegetable or fruit-derived sugar and is fermented and distilled to reach an ABV of 40% or over and with lower water content.
How Is Vodka Different From Other Spirits
The Formation Difference
So, vodka also qualifies to be a spirit as it is made from the sugars extracted from any grainy product like wheat, corn, rye, barley, and even potatoes. After that, it is fermented and distilled more than once to get the final alcohol product, i.e., vodka.
On the other hand, other spirits like whiskey, rum, or gin also go through a similar process. However, after distillation, they are either kept in oak barrels like in the whiskey case, mixed with juniper berries like gin, and mixed with other such sweeteners additives that provide them an entirely different taste.
Moreover, it is said, more times the vodka is distilled, the better it is. Distillation is done to remove any admixtures and flavors. As a good vodka is distilled at least three times, it gets much closer to just ethanol and water contents. This is also a reason vodka tastes almost like water, is colorless and transparent. As it is distilled more, the AVB percentage in vodka is always high than other spirits, making vodka the Russian vodka we all know of.
The Hungover Difference
A vodka is indeed a form of pure alcohol with no impurities. Also, vodka is the best spirit to get drunk from. If you are looking forward to getting drunk with alcohol alone, vodka never disappoints. The best part is when you get drunk with vodka; you feel less horrible and hungover the next day than other spirits because of the lack of admixtures in it.
While other spirits are just distilled once or twice with different aromatics, this is what makes them taste stronger and make you feel worse the next morning.
The Cocktail Difference
Vodka and cocktails go hand in hand. Various cocktail mixes include other spirits, but the world-famous cocktails known to man always include vodka.
Even the mixologists and bartenders are fond of using vodka as a cocktail. Well, the reason is obvious. For one, vodka is already declared as the mix-it-all drink. Two, there is no limit to how well vodka tastes with literally anything and everything.
Whatever famous cocktails you have heard of, be it the famous Screwdriver, the Cosmopolitan, the Moscow Mule, or Vodka Martini – they all contain vodka.
The Friendliness Difference
Vodka is also a beginner drink. For someone who is not into drinks much and is not accustomed to them, vodka is regarded as the safest drink to go for. As it is just mostly water and alcohol, it just ‘burns’ down your tongue with no strong taste.
On the other hand, other spirits are much stronger in taste, and usually, new drinkers are taken aback by the powerful taste some of the other spirits have.
The Distillation Difference
Vodka can be distilled from almost anything that contains sugar. The list of ingredients from which vodka can be made goes endless. Be it beet, quinoa, whey, honey, or fruit; vodka can be made out of anything.
While every other spirit is made from a particular sugar product only, for instance, Brandy is only distilled from fruits; whiskey is distilled from grains, tequila is distilled from agave, rum is distilled from sugar and gin is distilled from juniper berries.
The ABV Difference
The alcohol by volume percentage is highest in vodka. A good quality vodka can even have more than 95% vodka of ABV in it. This is attained by repeatedly distilling it. The yeast cannot survive in a mixture of more than 15% of ABV.
Therefore, the other spirits are distilled up to a point where Alcohol by volume remains about 40% to 50% i.e., all other spirits like rum, whiskey, gin, tequila have about 50% of ABV and the rest counts for the impurities.
Vodka, on the other hand, is distilled until it has no impurities left and sometimes could even have 100% alcohol content in it. This also takes us to the next difference.
The Neutrality Difference
What makes one brand of vodka different from another is the neutrality difference. The Neutral Grain Spirit (NGS) percentage difference is what makes one vodka brand too neutral than another. Most distillers prefer 99% of the NGS in their vodka, providing it with no distinguishing characteristic. Also, making it the purest form of alcohol that is colorless and transparent.
As you add water to your vodka, this percentage decreases; this is also what bartenders play with to taste each vodka drink and cocktail different. At each percentage of water added, the vodka taste will continue to change.
On the other hand, other spirits already have distinguishing characteristics, which is also why making a good cocktail out of them is a tough task. Any water added to them could disturb their taste highly.
The pro tip also says if you want to get a hand on your cocktail taste, start with vodka cocktails. Once you like a particular taste, switch to its other spirit version. For instance, if you like Lemon Drop or Cosmopolitan, you will fancy Mojito, Margarita well.
So, now that you have an idea of how is vodka different from other spirits – go ahead, and order Pristine Vodka in New York now.[ssba-buttons]