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August 19, 2021 | Curiosities | VodkaFew drinks have as much versatility as vodka. After all, there are a huge variety of ways to enjoy the Russian spirit that has become popular around the world over the years. Here in Brazil, the vodka “caipirinha” (known as caipiroska) is one of the examples of this success.

For those who want to know a little more about the subject, we have prepared a guide for you to know everything about vodka.


Vodka is a distillate obtained from cereals or tubers (such as potatoes). It is colorless and has an alcohol content that can vary from country to country – in Brazil it is between 36 and 54% (Decree 6871/06 article 61). 

And, despite being produced in several countries, it is considered the national drink of Poland and Russia.


It is not known for sure which country vodka was invented in, but the drink has its origins in Eastern Europe. Historians point out that the first signs of the distillate appeared between the 15th and 16th centuries. 

However, it was from the 19th century onwards that vodka reached a high level of quality and began to be exported from Russia to other countries. 

The drink’s growth begins between the 50’s and 60’s, and the drink’s “boom” happened after the 1970’s, when it became an option for the preparation of several cocktails. 

In Russian, the name “vodka” is short for “water” (voda). 


The first step in the manufacture of vodka is the fermentation of the sugars obtained from the raw materials – cereals, potatoes and grapes, for example.  

Then comes the moment of distillation, which can take place in column stills or copper stills. 

The third step is the removal of impurities, which occurs mainly by filtering through activated carbon or other types of filter according to the producer. 

Finally, the drink has its alcohol content reduced, in the case of Smirnoff, to a minimum of 37.5% for bottling.


Vodka can be enjoyed neat or in cocktails. 

Pure tasting is quite common in cold countries, mainly in Eastern Europe. It can be served as an aperitif at room temperature, chilled or with ice cubes. 

In drinks, its versatility allows different mixtures, including fruits, soft drinks or syrups, being used in the most varied classics, such as Caipiroska, Bloody Mary or Moscow Mule.

About Diageo

Diageo is a world leader in the premium spirits segment, with a collection of brands in the spirits and beer categories. The portfolio includes brands such as Smirnoff, Johnnie Walker, Guinness, Baileys, Cîroc, Tanqueray, Old Parr, among others, and locally Ypióca cachaça. Diageo is a multinational company operating in 180 countries. The company’s shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and the London Stock Exchange (DGE). For more information about Diageo, its employees, its brands and its performance, visit Learn more about responsible consumption of alcoholic beverages at. Drink smart. Do not share with anyone under the age of 18.


Vodka (from Russian: водка, Polish: wódka) is a distilled alcoholic beverage with different varieties originating in Eastern Europe. It is composed primarily of water and ethanol, but sometimes with traces of impurities and flavorings. Vodka is made by the distillation of fermented substances such as grains, potatoes, or sometimes fruits or sugar.

The word “vodka” is a diminutive form of the Slavic word voda (woda, вода), meaning “water”.[1][2] The word vodka was recorded for the first time in 1405 in Akta Grodzkie województwa krakowskiego (Acts of the Kraków Voivodeship), in which it is mentioned together with other alcoholic drinks served at the time.[3][4]

The word vodka written in Cyrillic appeared first in 1533, in relation to a medicinal drink brought from Poland to Russia by the merchants of Kievan Rus’. In these early days, the spirits were used mostly as medicines.[5][6]

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the vodka industry expanded rapidly in the Russian Empire and the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Vodka became one of the world’s most popular alcoholic beverages by the mid-20th century.[7]

Vodka is traditionally drunk neat (not mixed with anything), although it is often served with ice or mixed with water, juice, or other drinks. It is also used in cocktails and mixed drinks, such as the Bloody Mary, Screwdriver, and White Russian.

Vodka is the most popular spirit in the world,[8] and is one of the most widely consumed alcoholic beverages. In 2012, vodka was the world’s ninth-best-selling spirit, with sales of 22.5 million 9-liter cases.[9]

Vodka is distilled from a wide variety of fermented substances, most commonly grain or potatoes. The original Russian vodka was distilled from rye.[10] Other grains that can be used for vodka production include wheat, barley, sorghum, and rice.[11]

The earliest recorded mention of vodka in Poland comes from the early 14th-century Akta Grodzkie, court records from the Palatinate of Sandomierz in Poland.[12] It is thought that vodka was first distilled in the 8th century[13] in what is today Belarus, Russia, and Poland.

Vodka was initially used as a medicine in Eastern Europe and Russia.[14] It was believed to cure many different ailments, such as headache, anxiety, and even the common cold.[15]

Vodka was also believed to be an effective aphrodisiac.[16] In the early-1700s, Peter the Great of Russia issued a decree that vodka should be sold only in pharmacies.[17]

In the late 19th century, vodka became a popular drink in Russia and Poland.[18] It was often consumed at social gatherings, such as parties and weddings.[19]

Vodka became widely available in the United States in the early-1900s.[20] It was initially marketed as a medicinal drink, and was thought to have many health benefits.[21]

Vodka is now one of the most popular alcoholic beverages in the world.[22] It is typically consumed neat (not mixed with anything), although it is often served with ice or mixed with water, juice, or other drinks.

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