Vodka is now the most popular spirit worldwide. The consumption of this “clear” spirit is escalating almost monthly, even in countries traditionally preferring beer and wine to spirits.
One of the reasons of vodka’s popularity is its clarity, and the perception that it does not induce hangovers. In reality it does, but the effects are less severe than “brown” spirits.
Russians and Poles claim credit for inventing vodka. We will probably never know which of the two created the first vodka, but we do certainly know how popular it has become, ironically with the considerable marketing savvy of American spirit distributors.
Now, flavoured vodkas have started to appeal to young people constantly looking for variations of taste. You can buy vodkas flavoured with – cranberries, berries, chocolate, a range of stone fruits, even squid ink.
Zubrowka is produced only in Poland and has a unique taste of herbs, jasmine, tea, and citrus fruits, with a hint of chocolate.
Some imaginative experts claim Zubrowka to smell grassy, of hay, vanilla, flowers, and of thyme.
Regardless of descriptions, once you take a sip of Zubrowka, you know instantly that it is a wonderfully different spirit.
The roots of Zubwrowka go back to Bialowieza Forest in the remote northeast Poland. The region is one of the few surviving in its natural state of primeval forests that covered the European Plains 6000 years ago.
Untouched by civilization and industrialization, Bialowieza Forest has been under government protection since 1921.
Hierochloe odorata is a wild grass (it cannot be cultivated) and grows in locations that offer appropriate climates and soil conditions. Early summer bison grass smells of almond-vanilla and is the preferred diet of forest bison in Poland.
In Poland, only Polmos Bialystok, and which is located close to the Bialowieza Forest where zubr (bison grass) grows, is authorized to prtoduce Zubrowka. The company has developed special techniques in processing the grass and using it in its Zubrowka vodka.
This unique, and pleasantly flavoured vodka should be consumed neat. If you absolutely insist, you can use a few cubes of ice at the expense of diluting its flavour.
One must never use it in cocktails. It is too delicate and unique to mix with anything else.
Zubrowka has been awarded several gold medals in Leipzig, London, Brussels, Poznan, -spirit competitions.