Skip to content
Do you have adblock enabled?
 
If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(NPR)   Vodak is by definition odorless, colorless, and tasteless, so how can there be "fancy" brands that are more expensive than others? NPR has the answer, but bottom line: People are morons, and marketing works   (npr.org) divider line
    More: Obvious, video series, Vodka, English-language films, good Planet Money Shorts episode, Alcoholic beverage, fancy vodka, original episode, story of Sidney Frank  
•       •       •

773 clicks; posted to Food » on 12 Mar 2019 at 1:05 PM (10 days ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



62 Comments     (+0 »)
 
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


Oldest | « | 1 | 2 | » | Newest | Show all

 
2019-03-12 02:57:24 PM  
no kidding. how is this an article?
 
2019-03-12 02:59:22 PM  

angstareturns: no kidding. how is this an article?


It's not News, It's Fark
 
2019-03-12 02:59:44 PM  
Way to bring the edge, NPR.

/it's pretty much true, though
 
2019-03-12 03:00:06 PM  
Sounds like NPR is running out of things to say.  They covered this back last year:

https://www.npr.org/2018/03/01/590022​6​06/is-there-really-a-difference-betwee​n-expensive-vodka-and-cheap-vodka

But this has that new Rumplemintzy video goodness.
 
2019-03-12 03:06:19 PM  
I just want to know who that fake french girl is in the NPR vid. She's a dime. They are correct, but you should stay away from the extremely cheap plastic bottle tasting stuff unless you are just using it to wash something.
 
2019-03-12 03:10:44 PM  

justanotherfarkinfarker: I just want to know who that fake french girl is in the NPR vid. She's a dime. They are correct, but you should stay away from the extremely cheap plastic bottle tasting stuff unless you are just using it to wash something.


CSB: I actually did the Brita charcoal filter experiment, and turned some plastic bottle stuff into a pretty clean tasting vodak.  I even had multiple labelled shot-glasses for my control and various stages.  After 3 filters, there was no appreciable change.

I know this had been previously published and done on Mythbusters... but I still had fun :)
 
2019-03-12 03:11:11 PM  
They're partly correct. Yes, legally, the FDA defines vodka as filtered such that it lacks distinctive character. But NPR assumes (i) that's strictly enforced, (ii) vodka makers are 100% compliant, and (iii) "distinctive" has an objective definition rather than a subjective one. But NPR's earlier story that Ditty linked actually shows that those are false, when they had a lab test three different vodkas and found them to be different.

They're not very different, mind you, and certainly not worth the price differences and marketing, but I'd bet that many vodkas can be distinguished in an ABX test.
 
2019-03-12 03:14:01 PM  
img.fark.netView Full Size
 
2019-03-12 03:19:55 PM  

Theaetetus: But NPR's earlier story that Ditty linked actually shows that those are false, when they had a lab test three different vodkas and found them to be different.


Read the story again.  There wasn't any difference significant that you could taste.  And the Grey Goose asshole was talking bullshiat about how "decanting it" into a different container changes its character.

You know, a glass is a different container.....
 
2019-03-12 03:29:53 PM  
You bet your ass marketing works. People are dumb and easily suggestible. Honestly, it's almost too easy.
 
2019-03-12 03:32:18 PM  
I was expecting it to be a video about infused vodkas, which I imagine cost a good bit less to infuse with fruit flavors and leave sit awhile than it does to run vodka through multiple additional passes in the still to remove the last traces of taste and aroma. Because, hey, why go through all that extra work when you can just cover up the impurities with a little banana flavoring and sell if for the same high price, right?

/No idea if that's really how they make flavored vodak but it wouldn't surprise me in the least if it was
 
2019-03-12 03:40:51 PM  

dittybopper: Theaetetus: But NPR's earlier story that Ditty linked actually shows that those are false, when they had a lab test three different vodkas and found them to be different.

Read the story again.  There wasn't any difference significant that you could taste.


... that the lab thinks you can taste. But did they do a taste test? No. So it's not really supported by anything other than "we measured a difference, but we think it's irrelevant for... uh, reasons."

And the Grey Goose asshole was talking bullshiat about how "decanting it" into a different container changes its character.

Well, yeah, but have you ever known anyone remotely associated with Grey Goose that wasn't an asshole?
 
2019-03-12 03:47:49 PM  

Theaetetus: But did they do a taste test? No.


We don't know that. They don't give any details on the tests.
 
2019-03-12 03:52:33 PM  
Isn't vodka just pure grain alcohol with water added to dilute it to the desired proof? Would it be the quality of the water that could make one vodka taste "better" than others?
 
2019-03-12 03:54:40 PM  
The spirit that goes into a charred oak barrel to be changed into bourbon is a clear, flavorless liquid as well. The char is what gives the resulting drink it's flavor. The time in the barrel also mediates that "hotness" of the spirit. Up to around 23-25 years. After that the spirit starts to degrade.

So, says the bourbon tour at Buffalo Trace, aka the distiller of Pappy Van Winkle.
 
2019-03-12 04:01:50 PM  
Well there was that expert vodak taster who pretty much nailed every single vodak. The charcoal filter did no good.

Of course, being a professional vodak taster, he probably recognized every single vodak by taste not by quality.
 
2019-03-12 04:02:55 PM  
Yeah, vodka isn't "flavorless", nor is it "odorless".

There might be a lot of marketing hype between the different brands, but there is still a flavor and an odor to vodka.
 
2019-03-12 04:11:44 PM  

pheelix: I was expecting it to be a video about infused vodkas, which I imagine cost a good bit less to infuse with fruit flavors and leave sit awhile than it does to run vodka through multiple additional passes in the still to remove the last traces of taste and aroma. Because, hey, why go through all that extra work when you can just cover up the impurities with a little banana flavoring and sell if for the same high price, right?

/No idea if that's really how they make flavored vodak but it wouldn't surprise me in the least if it was


So why not accuse  company's of things because that's what you would do
 
2019-03-12 04:14:16 PM  
There are definitely some dirt cheap, rot gut brands out there.  Most of us experienced one of them in college (I'm looking at you, McCormick).  As the poster upthread stated, the Brita trick does work.  However, brands like Tito's are fairly inexpensive and perfectly acceptable.  Paying 3x as much for Grey Goose is just silly.
 
2019-03-12 04:15:50 PM  

yakmans_dad: The spirit that goes into a charred oak barrel to be changed into bourbon is a clear, flavorless liquid as well. The char is what gives the resulting drink it's flavor. The time in the barrel also mediates that "hotness" of the spirit. Up to around 23-25 years. After that the spirit starts to degrade.

So, says the bourbon tour at Buffalo Trace, aka the distiller of Pappy Van Winkle.


The mash bill on bourbon is specific, not so for vodka
 
2019-03-12 04:21:59 PM  

Mikey1969: Yeah, vodka isn't "flavorless", nor is it "odorless".

There might be a lot of marketing hype between the different brands, but there is still a flavor and an odor to vodka.


The cheap stuff certainly tastes like it wasn't filtered properly.  That or some dude spit in it.
 
2019-03-12 04:36:28 PM  

chitownmike: yakmans_dad: The spirit that goes into a charred oak barrel to be changed into bourbon is a clear, flavorless liquid as well. The char is what gives the resulting drink it's flavor. The time in the barrel also mediates that "hotness" of the spirit. Up to around 23-25 years. After that the spirit starts to degrade.

So, says the bourbon tour at Buffalo Trace, aka the distiller of Pappy Van Winkle.

The mash bill on bourbon is specific, not so for vodka


Take it up with the distillers of Pappy Van Winkle.
 
2019-03-12 04:38:16 PM  
Water is supposed to be the same and theres also a ton of brands claiming they taste the best.
 
2019-03-12 04:48:01 PM  

Shazam999: Mikey1969: Yeah, vodka isn't "flavorless", nor is it "odorless".

There might be a lot of marketing hype between the different brands, but there is still a flavor and an odor to vodka.

The cheap stuff certainly tastes like it wasn't filtered properly.  That or some dude spit in it.


Oh, that's just the "special" flavoring that one dude who never got a date in high school adds, out of pure spite.
 
2019-03-12 04:57:26 PM  

yakmans_dad: chitownmike: yakmans_dad: The spirit that goes into a charred oak barrel to be changed into bourbon is a clear, flavorless liquid as well. The char is what gives the resulting drink it's flavor. The time in the barrel also mediates that "hotness" of the spirit. Up to around 23-25 years. After that the spirit starts to degrade.

So, says the bourbon tour at Buffalo Trace, aka the distiller of Pappy Van Winkle.

The mash bill on bourbon is specific, not so for vodka

Take it up with the distillers of Pappy Van Winkle.


Wanna clarify? I think pappy falls in the straight bourbon category
 
2019-03-12 05:41:51 PM  

Theaetetus: Well, yeah, but have you ever known anyone remotely associated with Grey Goose that wasn't an asshole?


My ex-boss. Total stand-up guy. Grey Goose was his favourite vodka. We were working on a game 15 or so years ago now, total hush hush so he gave it the code name was 'Grey Goose'.

You did say remotely connected :p
 
2019-03-12 05:43:09 PM  

Cortez the Killer: Isn't vodka just pure grain alcohol with water added to dilute it to the desired proof? Would it be the quality of the water that could make one vodka taste "better" than others?


the water is the most important part, besides filtering out the nasties
 
2019-03-12 06:18:27 PM  

angstareturns: Cortez the Killer: Isn't vodka just pure grain alcohol with water added to dilute it to the desired proof? Would it be the quality of the water that could make one vodka taste "better" than others?

the water is the most important part, besides filtering out the nasties


No. The difference is due to lack of enforcement of the law. So producers do whatever the fark they want. Go look at the local liquor store
 
2019-03-12 06:37:21 PM  
Tasteless? I think the Russians would disagree with that statement
 
2019-03-12 06:48:49 PM  
I've always liked gems. Precious and semi.

When I was a yoot, brown diamonds were low quality stones. Much cheaper than other kinds.

But in the past decade or two, I've seen them at a premium price as "Tea Diamonds". So not only are you paying the thousandfold DeBeer's tax, but another 30% on top of that even for a quality of gem formerly only a grade or two above what they put on drill bits.
 
2019-03-12 06:49:04 PM  
That's the power of advertising
 
2019-03-12 07:22:07 PM  

dittybopper: Theaetetus: But NPR's earlier story that Ditty linked actually shows that those are false, when they had a lab test three different vodkas and found them to be different.

Read the story again.  There wasn't any difference significant that you could taste.  And the Grey Goose asshole was talking bullshiat about how "decanting it" into a different container changes its character.

You know, a glass is a different container.....


I did a blizzard taste test with multiple rounds of diff vodaks and 2same 1 diff, pick the odd one out. Much to my surprise they actually are noticeably different. Try it yourself.
 
2019-03-12 07:54:02 PM  

mathamagical: dittybopper: Theaetetus: But NPR's earlier story that Ditty linked actually shows that those are false, when they had a lab test three different vodkas and found them to be different.

Read the story again.  There wasn't any difference significant that you could taste.  And the Grey Goose asshole was talking bullshiat about how "decanting it" into a different container changes its character.

You know, a glass is a different container.....

I did a blizzard taste test with multiple rounds of diff vodaks and 2same 1 diff, pick the odd one out. Much to my surprise they actually are noticeably different. Try it yourself.


Ive done the pepsi challenge with vodka before. I seem to recall all of them being either terrible or bland. I don't know why anyone waste time with neutral spirits when it could be introduced to the magic of wood or juniper.
 
2019-03-12 08:25:33 PM  

angstareturns: no kidding. how is this an article?


It's not. It's a farking video by a hipster in a fedora, which I refuse to watch since I could absorb that information probably 10 times faster reading.

Ain't nobody gots time fo' dat.
 
2019-03-12 08:31:43 PM  

mathamagical: dittybopper: Theaetetus: But NPR's earlier story that Ditty linked actually shows that those are false, when they had a lab test three different vodkas and found them to be different.

Read the story again.  There wasn't any difference significant that you could taste.  And the Grey Goose asshole was talking bullshiat about how "decanting it" into a different container changes its character.

You know, a glass is a different container.....

I did a blizzard taste test with multiple rounds of diff vodaks and 2same 1 diff, pick the odd one out. Much to my surprise they actually are noticeably different. Try it yourself.


I did that with three different vodkas.  Stolichniya, Zybrowa, and Zubrowa (sp? The one with the Buffalo Grass in the bottle).

Definitely a difference between them. All the same price point. I'd take the Zybrowa if given a choice.  I would not kick any of them out of bed though.
 
2019-03-12 08:32:03 PM  

chitownmike: yakmans_dad: chitownmike: yakmans_dad: The spirit that goes into a charred oak barrel to be changed into bourbon is a clear, flavorless liquid as well. The char is what gives the resulting drink it's flavor. The time in the barrel also mediates that "hotness" of the spirit. Up to around 23-25 years. After that the spirit starts to degrade.

So, says the bourbon tour at Buffalo Trace, aka the distiller of Pappy Van Winkle.

The mash bill on bourbon is specific, not so for vodka

Take it up with the distillers of Pappy Van Winkle.

Wanna clarify? I think pappy falls in the straight bourbon category


We took the tour at Buffalo Trace in Frankfort. The guide said what emerges from the still is a colorless, tasteless liquid. It derives its taste from sitting in charred oak barrels. The longer (up to 25 years or so) it sits in the barrel, the more mellow the taste.  At around 23-25 years the taste starts to degrade.
 
2019-03-12 08:35:39 PM  
Vodkas definitely have some differences in flavor profiles. I'm not sure how much of that is non-compliance with regulations, but some are tastier and I don't just mean that as less harsh. That being said, the differences are mostly subtle and if you are paying more than $30 for a fifth of vodka, you are probably overpaying. Hell, if you're spending more than $20 there's a good chance you're overpaying.
 
2019-03-12 09:04:31 PM  

max_pooper: mathamagical: dittybopper: Theaetetus: But NPR's earlier story that Ditty linked actually shows that those are false, when they had a lab test three different vodkas and found them to be different.

Read the story again.  There wasn't any difference significant that you could taste.  And the Grey Goose asshole was talking bullshiat about how "decanting it" into a different container changes its character.

You know, a glass is a different container.....

I did a blizzard taste test with multiple rounds of diff vodaks and 2same 1 diff, pick the odd one out. Much to my surprise they actually are noticeably different. Try it yourself.

Ive done the pepsi challenge with vodka before. I seem to recall all of them being either terrible or bland. I don't know why anyone waste time with neutral spirits when it could be introduced to the magic of wood or juniper.


Well I definitely don't like neat vodka, I'm just saying there was a difference. Id recomend sobieski for vodak. $10/bottle here and better than anything else I've tried
 
2019-03-12 09:06:42 PM  

chitownmike: angstareturns: Cortez the Killer: Isn't vodka just pure grain alcohol with water added to dilute it to the desired proof? Would it be the quality of the water that could make one vodka taste "better" than others?

the water is the most important part, besides filtering out the nasties

No. The difference is due to lack of enforcement of the law. So producers do whatever the fark they want. Go look at the local liquor store


I ran a huge liquor store for years, one of the few things i know a bit about is booze
 
2019-03-12 09:25:25 PM  
Vodka is my go to cocktail - usually I get vodka soda with lime and the key flavor difference is the lime.
 
2019-03-12 09:55:38 PM  

max_pooper: Ive done the pepsi challenge with vodka before. I seem to recall all of them being either terrible or bland. I don't know why anyone waste time with neutral spirits when it could be introduced to the magic of wood or juniper.


My wife won a bottle of gin from Freeland Spirits.  Those women really know how to make it.
 
2019-03-12 10:59:24 PM  
The FARK headline is basically correct. Great mixer plus crap vodka equals good highball. Making a martini, splurge for ketel one.
 
2019-03-12 11:10:56 PM  

baron von doodle: The FARK headline is basically correct. Great mixer plus crap vodka equals good highball. Making a martini, splurge for ketel one.


Martini? For that you need gin.
 
2019-03-13 12:00:22 AM  

yakmans_dad: chitownmike: yakmans_dad: chitownmike: yakmans_dad: The spirit that goes into a charred oak barrel to be changed into bourbon is a clear, flavorless liquid as well. The char is what gives the resulting drink it's flavor. The time in the barrel also mediates that "hotness" of the spirit. Up to around 23-25 years. After that the spirit starts to degrade.

So, says the bourbon tour at Buffalo Trace, aka the distiller of Pappy Van Winkle.

The mash bill on bourbon is specific, not so for vodka

Take it up with the distillers of Pappy Van Winkle.

Wanna clarify? I think pappy falls in the straight bourbon category

We took the tour at Buffalo Trace in Frankfort. The guide said what emerges from the still is a colorless, tasteless liquid. It derives its taste from sitting in charred oak barrels. The longer (up to 25 years or so) it sits in the barrel, the more mellow the taste.  At around 23-25 years the taste starts to degrade.


No shiat, doesn't change the fact that vodka can be made from anything and whisky can't. You are missing the point
 
2019-03-13 12:05:18 AM  

angstareturns: chitownmike: angstareturns: Cortez the Killer: Isn't vodka just pure grain alcohol with water added to dilute it to the desired proof? Would it be the quality of the water that could make one vodka taste "better" than others?

the water is the most important part, besides filtering out the nasties

No. The difference is due to lack of enforcement of the law. So producers do whatever the fark they want. Go look at the local liquor store

I ran a huge liquor store for years, one of the few things i know a bit about is booze


You didn't learn much, in all those years. Or you are just dumb
 
2019-03-13 01:21:47 AM  
1) Yes, there are many overpriced vodkas.
2) But if you honestly think Popov is better than Chopin.....you should see a doctor.
 
2019-03-13 01:23:42 AM  

yakmans_dad: chitownmike: yakmans_dad: chitownmike: yakmans_dad: The spirit that goes into a charred oak barrel to be changed into bourbon is a clear, flavorless liquid as well. The char is what gives the resulting drink it's flavor. The time in the barrel also mediates that "hotness" of the spirit. Up to around 23-25 years. After that the spirit starts to degrade.

So, says the bourbon tour at Buffalo Trace, aka the distiller of Pappy Van Winkle.

The mash bill on bourbon is specific, not so for vodka

Take it up with the distillers of Pappy Van Winkle.

Wanna clarify? I think pappy falls in the straight bourbon category

We took the tour at Buffalo Trace in Frankfort. The guide said what emerges from the still is a colorless, tasteless liquid. It derives its taste from sitting in charred oak barrels. The longer (up to 25 years or so) it sits in the barrel, the more mellow the taste.  At around 23-25 years the taste starts to degrade.


I did the Maker's Mark Tour last year, Andy i am so glad I did.
 
2019-03-13 01:43:00 AM  
*and I am so glad I did.
 
Oak
2019-03-13 02:48:33 AM  

Smelly Pirate Hooker: You bet your ass marketing works. People are dumb and easily suggestible. Honestly, it's almost too easy.


Well, yeah; that's how you get Team Coke and Team Pepsi, Team Edward and Team Jacob, and the Politics tab
 
2019-03-13 04:10:43 AM  

chitownmike: angstareturns: chitownmike: angstareturns: Cortez the Killer: Isn't vodka just pure grain alcohol with water added to dilute it to the desired proof? Would it be the quality of the water that could make one vodka taste "better" than others?

the water is the most important part, besides filtering out the nasties

No. The difference is due to lack of enforcement of the law. So producers do whatever the fark they want. Go look at the local liquor store

I ran a huge liquor store for years, one of the few things i know a bit about is booze

You didn't learn much, in all those years. Or you are just dumb


not wrestling you, pig
 
Displayed 50 of 62 comments


Oldest | « | 1 | 2 | » | Newest | Show all


View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

This thread is closed to new comments.

Continue Farking





On Twitter




In Other Media
Top Commented
Javascript is required to view headlines in widget.
  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.

Report