Vodka is a diminutive for of the Slavic word voda (water). It means little water.
The first record of vodka dates back to 1405 in Poland.
Although Russians claim to have produced vodka before Poles, the Poles insist and can prove that they were the first.
In both nations, vodka enjoys wide popularity, and now the ubiquity of this “white” sprit is worldwide surpassing sales of all “brown” (read Oak or barrel aged) spirits.
According to the OED (Oxford English Dictionary), Stefan Falimierz, a Pole, asserted as early as 16th century that “herbed” vodka, mainly flavoured with bison grass, could increase fertility, and lust.
Bison grass- vodka (zubrowka) goes back to the 16th century Poland. Its unique and brownish colour, smooth and aromatic flavour made it popular in a short period and was exported to Silesia, the Netherlands, Denmark, England, Russia, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Romania, the Untied Kingdom, Bulgaria and other countries around the Black Sea.
Bison grass is endangered bison’s favourite food, only found within the Biatoweiza forest straddling the borders of northeast Poland and Belarus.
is a wild, highly aromatic grass that must be hand harvested, and after washing, is to the vodka. One blade of bison grass and minute quantity of its extract, render the double-distilled vodka a pale olive colour, unique and very appealing herbaceous aroma, and velvety texture.
All vodka including zubrowka should be enjoyed ice cold or on plenty of “rocks” to appreciate its true flavours.
There are many vodka distillers. Some claim to distil three times and some even five times to achieve smoothness and purity. What matters though is the basic starch-containing ingredient, which may be any grain (i.e rye, corn, wheat) or potato. Most vodka is made using grain. It is widely available and inexpensive. Few distillers use potato. Only two per cent of all vodka produced in the world is distilled exclusively using potato. The tuber imparts an extraordinary purity and texture which Luksusova, one of the few potato-based vodkas offers.
While Slavic populations have been enjoying vodka for centuries, North Americans hardy ever drank it until mid 20th century.
Vodka was first introduced to the North American marketplace in 1950’s by Brown-Foreman and thanks to this company’s marketing efforts; it became very popular in a short time. Now vodka outsells Bourbon in the U.S.A.
Luksusova, a Polish vodka brand since 1928, offers pure flavours and smoothness no other vodka does. Now available in a newly designed square bottle, Luksusova is widely available in Canada at a very competitive price.
The aromatic and intriguing Zubrowka ( $ 26.00) marketed in Canada by PMA and available through the Vintages in Ontario.
For more information contact Jessie@ybimc.com or call 416 893 4271