Looking for the best facts about vodka? From its disputed history, most popular brands and tastiest cocktails, we’ve got you covered!
Let’s raise our glass and have a toast to the most versatile and smooth tasting spirit in the world of alcohol, vodka!
Not only does vodka make the best cocktails, it also has a fascinating history.
Did you know that vodka wasn’t widely available in North America and Western Europe until the mid-1900s? Vodka only became popular after WWII, when the drink branched out from its origins in Russia and Poland.
With these facts about vodka we’ll also debunk some misconceptions that are widely believed about the drink.
For example, is vodka made from potatoes? Or is vodka gluten-free? Or can vodka really be used to disinfect a bleeding wound?
We’ll also discover some of the wackiest vodka facts including the oddest flavors, the enduring traditions and… scorpions? Keep reading to find out how this deadly arachnid fits into the world of vodka.
Mix yourself a martini, a cosmopolitan, a Moscow mule, or even the dreaded vodka Red Bull and lets get this vodka adventure started!
23 Fun Facts About Vodka
1. What country invented vodka?
This is a heated debate between Russia and Poland. Poland claims to be the first country to distill vodka in 1405 and tried to ban Russia from using the name vodka in 1977.
Russia claims it distilled vodka first in 1430. All we can say is the debate has never been settled, but we’re supporting Poland in this one.
2. The day the vodka ran dry
What happens when the Russians have a huge reason to celebrate? They drink tons of vodka of course.
On May 9th 1945 after the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany, it’s said that Russia ran out of vodka in 22 hours! This is one of the fun facts about vodka we almost couldn’t believe.
3. The vodka belt
There are many countries that consider vodka a large part of their history and culture. These nations are collectively known as the vodka belt.
Countries in the vodka belt include: Russia, Belarus, Poland, Slovakia, Ukraine, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Sweden, Norway and Finland.
4. Does vodka mean water?
The answer is yes! Both the Russian and Polish words for vodka are derived from the word water.
In Russian, voda is water, so they threw in the k just for clarification. You really don’t want to confuse the two, especially when brushing your teeth.
5. Is vodka made from potatoes?
While most people believe that vodka is derived from the potato, other grains are actually more commonly used. Vodka can be distilled from a myriad of bases including grain, rice, molasses, and fruit. Of course, there’s some awesome potato vodka out there too!
6. What’s the world’s most expensive vodka?
Billionaire Vodka is going to set you back a pretty penny. In fact, a single bottle is sold for $3.7 million!
The vodka is distilled while being poured over diamonds and the bottle is studded with over 3,000 diamonds and Swarovski crystals.
7. Vodka is healthy?
Believe it or not, moderate vodka consumption can be beneficial to your health. The benefits include improved cardiovascular health like lowered cholesterol, a reduction in stress, and a remedy against fever.
Drinking too much vodka, however, will have disastrous effects on liver function and many other important bodily systems.
8. Odd uses for vodka
That’s right, vodka isn’t just for drinking. In a pinch, it can be used as an antiseptic to clean out wounds. That’s why you see alcohol often being poured on the injured in movies as they scream out in pain. Vodka can also work as a cleaning agent.
9. Drunken flowers
Speaking of the diversity of vodka, did you know that fresh cut flowers like a little taste of vodka too?
Horticulturist and researcher John Dole discovered that adding a few drops of vodka to a vase of flowers delays wilting.
10. Wacky vodka flavors
If you read our fun facts about gin, you’d know that many unique flavors can be infused into spirits. And vodka is no exception.
Some interesting vodka infusions include bacon, peanut butter and jelly, dill pickle, cookie dough, smoked salmon, ghost pepper, and Fruit Loops. Is it just us or do some of these sound delicious?
11. A vicious vodka
Speaking of strange flavors, we had to give this truly creepy concoction a solo spot in our list of vodka facts. Every bottle of Skorppio Vodka includes a scorpion in the bottle.
The venom is removed, so the scorpion is meant to be eaten after the bottle is finished. Uhh, we think we’ll pass on that one!
12. Why is vodka flavorless?
The highest quality vodkas are thought to be flavorless, while some of the cheaper stuff can taste absolutely retched.
The reason for vodka’s subtle flavor is the distilling process that requires three distillations filtered through charcoal, making it purer and less alcohol-tasting.
13. Is vodka gluten free?
Good news for the gluten intolerants out there – vodka is completely gluten free! The spirit made from the most gluten-y ingredients like grains and rice, has all the gluten protein removed during the distillation process. Cheers to that!
14. Cocktail hour
Some of the most famous cocktails of all-time are vodka based. How about the charming cosmopolitan made with vodka, cranberry juice and Cointreau? Or a Moscow mule with vodka, ginger beer and lime.
And don’t forget the classic vodka martini, the drink preferred by none other than James Bond.
15. Getting paid in vodka
During a financial crisis in the 1990s, the Russian government in Siberia had no choice but to pay their teachers with vodka instead of money.
The idea was that these liquid assets were the next best thing to cash. And this wasn’t just a quirky fact from a small Siberian village – over 8,000 teachers were paid this way!
16. What’s the best-selling vodka of all time?
When you think about vodka, what is the first brand that comes to mind? For most people that would be Smirnoff.
Smirnoff was started by a Russian peasant, who marketed his vodka to the poor masses and created the largest vodka empire on earth. Hey, there should be a movie about that!
17. Does vodka go bad?
Once you open a bottle of vodka you should drink it within a year, and at the most two years.
This is because the strength of the vodka diminishes once it’s opened and exposed to air. If you have a closed bottle collecting dust, it can last up to 20 years unopened.
18. All the celebrity vodkas
A popular side hustle for the rich and famous seems to be distilling vodka! There’s two Ghostbusters in the biz. Crystal Head Vodka from Dan Aykroyd and Slovenia Vodka from Bill Murray.
Other famous vodka brands are Jason Derulo’s Bedlam Vodka, VDKA 6100 from Robert Deniro, and Born and Bred Vodka from Channing Tatum.
19. Happy shaving
Vodka. It’s not just for drinking! If you have an old bottle of vodka that’s past its prime, how about making a DIY aftershave?
We’ll give you a rundown of the ingredients you’ll need. ½ cup vodka, ¼ cup witch hazel, 1 tbsp glycerin, a few drops of essential oil in a scent of your choice.
20. A vodka science lesson
Did you know that vodka actually weighs less than water? Since ethanol, a main component of vodka, is less dense than water, a 950g bottle of vodka is equivalent to 1,000g of water. Count this one as one of the vodka facts that surprised us.
21. Who drinks the most vodka?
It will come as no surprise that Russia drinks the most vodka worldwide, and it’s not even close!
The average Russian drinks 17 shots of vodka per month. Runner-up vodka drinkers Poland partake in around 13 shots per month.
22. Making vodka more expensive
The high vodka consumption in Russia has received a lot of attention from the Russian government. In fact, in order to curb excessive drinking, in 2010, the government doubled the price of vodka for its citizens.
23. The great vodka heist
There’s good money to be made from stealing vodka. In 2013, a Miami storeroom was raided and over $1.1 million worth of vodka was stolen.
752 cases of the top-shelf Spirit of the Tsars Golden Vodka were lifted at $250-$300 per bottle.
Who wants more fun facts?
If you’re looking for some recommendations, these are a few of our favorite fact books to buy. We use these when planning fun trivia nights with family and friends!
We really hope you enjoyed all our fun facts about vodka! Did you learn something new?
If there’s any vodka facts we missed, you can let us know in the comments below and we’ll add them to this article!