Over the last one thousand years, vodka managed to rise from the simple medicinal remedy, created by the freshly discovered process of distillation, to the popular alcohol spirit that is consumed by the billions of consumers all around the world. A cold environment which can sustain only grain-based products forced the people of this land to focus their ingenuity and efforts into creating fermented drinks from grain (mostly beer), but after the arrival of distillation pots around the 9th century, they were given the ability to create more powerful spirits. The first recorded mention of the word vodka (which means "little water" in Russian) comes from the 9th century, and the first distillery was formed almost two hundred years later in 1174.
Similar as whisky, vodka had its hurdles in the path of its rising popularity. Russian government noticed early its popularity, and successfully managed to monetize and control its manufacturing and sales, but after several centuries, they removed the taxes and enabled individual brewers to produce and sell their drinks. During the last one hundred years, vodka remained the absolute most popular drink in Russia (ranging from 70 to 89% of consumption), and since the 1950s, its popularity greatly rose in the remainder of the world. Few factors that contributed to the vodka's success were its neutrality, ability to be mixed into many popular cocktails, lack of flavor in drinker's breath, and big marketing campaign that promoted it across entire world (most notably in James Bond movies).
Ever since its first appearance around 1000 years ago, vodka became an important part of several cultures in of the Eastern Europe, and later on the world. Its influence on the culture and religion paved the way for the state of alcoholic beverages today.
After the discovery of the process of distillation, vodka managed to capture the spirit of many nations in the northern part of Europe. As the centuries went on, the influence of vodka has spread across the world, making it today one of the most beloved alcoholic drink. Find out more.
If you ever wanted to know how vodka is made, this is the perfect place for it. Here you can find detailed descriptions of production steps in both professional made and homemade vodkas.
Here are some of the most interesting facts about this incredible drink: