Whiskey used to be the spirit of choice in the United States until 1976 when Smirnoff Vodka was marketed as a white whiskey, and vodka’s neutral flavor appealed to more people.
Since then, vodka has catapulted to the forefront of the spirits market not just in America, but in a lot of other countries. Why is vodka so popular? Here are 10 reasons you can refer to.
Why Is Vodka So Popular?
1. Vodka Is Associated With Partying
All sorts of parties from college parties to family gatherings involve shots, and vodka remains the prime choice for the job.
With the many traditions and expectations established among social circles, it is only natural that vodka has become a staple in nearly every celebration whether casual or formal.
As such, people have associated vodka with partying and fun times, which is faithful to how Russians treat vodka.
In Russia, vodka is a means to socialize and establish camaraderie, and while this is not the belief that catapulted vodka to success in America, it is the same principle that is practiced.
2. Vodka Is An Excellent Base Spirit
As per the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau and similar entities around the world, vodka is supposed to have a predominantly neutral flavor profile.
While vodka does have distinct notes and different mouthfeels, vodka’s colorless, odorless, and subtly flavorless appeal makes vodka an excellent mixer and base spirit for cocktails.
Additionally, you don’t need an expensive bottle of vodka to create delicious cocktails. With a little experimenting, you can come up with an impressive Moscow Mule on a budget.
If you decide to splurge on a premium vodka brand, you will find that premium vodka is suitable for a larger assortment of cocktails and often has a smoother mouthfeel and less burn.
Either way, vodka is the best spirit to add variety to your drinking experience without having to switch from one spirit brand to another.
3. Vodka Comes In All Sorts Of Flavors
If you are not fond of creating your own cocktails, you will be pleased to discover that vodka comes in a large assortment of flavors.
Most vodka flavors today are inspired by fruits and botanicals, such as Grey Goose Essences and Ketel One Botanical Collection.
In case you are feeling more adventurous, the vodka market is never short on dessert-flavored vodkas ranging from whipped cream to chocolate cake.
Moreover, certain vodka brands sell pre-mixed vodka cocktails, so all you have to do is to chill the bottle in the freezer or serve the pre-mixed vodka on the rocks.
4. Vodka Is Affordable
Vodka can come in all shapes, sizes, and prices. As such, vodka brands today are classified as top-shelf, middle-shelf, or bottom-shelf.
Surprisingly, Smirnoff Vodka, a brand that is considered bottom-shelf vodka in America because of its price, has ranked superior to a lot of premium brands in terms of taste.
Moreover, there are a lot of vodka brands in the market that sell for even less than Smirnoff and Tito’s Handmade Vodka and have a decent quality.
5. Vodka Can Be Expensive
While vodka can be extremely cheap, vodka can also be extremely pricey. If you aim to impress, you have more than a dozen premium vodka brands to choose from.
Some of them are Grey Goose, Ciroc, Belvedere, and Chopin. In fact, even Smirnoff has premium varieties that come at a hefty price tag.
Additionally, premium vodkas are packaged in sleek bottles, some of which are trademarked like Grey Goose’s, frosted like Chopin’s, and intrinsically detailed like Belvedere’s vodka.
Moreover, vodka can be so expensive that there are brands that cost millions. Currently, the most expensive of them all is Billionaire Vodka, which is priced at $7.25 million per bottle.
6. Vodka Has A Neutral Taste
Vodka’s neutral taste does not come in handy just when you are making cocktails. Surprisingly, a lot of people want to consume alcohol without tasting the alcohol.
Since a lot of vodka brands today are distilled to the point that they are tasteless or have little to no burn, vodka is a great alternative if you cannot handle spirits like gin or brandy.
Additionally, vodka’s neutral flavor profile makes it an ideal aperitif or digestif depending on what you are consuming.
7. Vodka Has Many Uses
With most vodkas being bottled at a minimum of 40% ABV or 80 proof, people have found plenty of other uses for vodka.
Spirytus Rektyfikowany is currently the world’s highest-proof vodka, and Spirytus Rektyfikowany has been used not only to make liqueur but also to produce hand sanitizers and other cleaning agents.
Similarly, Everclear (which is technically a rectified spirit) has been widely used by the public to create shaving cream and treat a large variety of injuries, including jellyfish stings.
8. Vodka Is Easy To Make
Another reason vodka is so popular is that there are a lot of daring home distillers in the world, and vodka is by far the easiest spirit to produce.
After all, vodka is simply made up of ethanol and water. Moreover, vodka can be made from grains, potatoes, and any foodstuff that contains sugar or starch.
Moreover, if home distillers can make vodka, it is a piece of cake for commercial distillers around the world who want to create the next breakout brand in the vodka industry.
9. Vodka Can Be Infused With Almost Anything
Vodka enthusiasts who cannot make their own vodka at home can settle for creating their own infusions.
Fruits, vegetables, and herbs are popular options for infusing vodka. All you have to do is get your favorite unflavored vodka brand, put your ingredient of choice in the vodka, and let it steep.
In fact, creating home infusions has become so popular that the internet is brimming with all sorts of recipes.
10. Vodka Has A Colorful Origin
All spirits have origin stories but nothing quite matches the colorful, startling, and sometimes tragic history of vodka.
Firstly, both Russia and Poland claim to be vodka’s originators. To this day, both countries are still insisting that they invented vodka.
Nonetheless, vodka is intrinsically tied to Russia, vodka being Russia’s national drink. Russians are so devoted to vodka that when it was prohibited, vodka indirectly caused the Tsar’s downfall.
Read our related articles to discover why vodka is so cheap, why your vodka freezes, and what fig vodka is.
Vodka has been around for a long time, first as a medicinal tool and now as the spirit of choice for almost every occasion.
Even as spirits like whiskey are making a huge comeback, it is undeniable that vodka has carved itself a permanent place in the hearts of drinkers around the world.