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Nominated for: BEST Trendy Bar
Vodka reached the United States in the 1930's when Vladimir Smirnoff ("It leaves you breathless") fled Russia after the October Revolution left his business broke. After reviving his business and building the name into the world's largest vodka brand, America GIs brought their taste home (no doubt after partying with their Russian allies) and so began the ever increasing presence of vodka in our social and drinking culture. Thanks to ingenious marketing and flavoring of vodkas (Absolut and Stolichnay, respectively) vodka has recently surpassed scotch as the world's number one spirit.
Several nations have a singular beverage that has been identified with them. The Irish have whiskey, the Scottish have scotch, the Brits and Germans have beer, Mexico has tequila, Japan has sake, the French have wine and the Russians, Poles, Finns and Ukranians have vodka.
A fond Slavic diminutive that means "little water," vodka is "voda" in Russian and "woda" in Polish. Each country lays claim to have been the birthplace of vodka, but there are no easy answers. It dates back hundreds of years, but the Russo-Polish border has moved several times since then.
Back in the day, vodka was harsh stuff and it was often masked by eastern European herbs and spices. But as the distilling process improved, the trend was toward neutrality. Now, many vodka brands are saturating the market with dozens of flavors since the vodka cocktail/martini is the perfect vehicle for clean, pure added flavors.
Are they the real thing? You are the jury of one. It is your vodka. While many believe vodka on the rocks is a sin against nature, warm vodka is a sign that all is not well with the world. The colder the vodka, the better. Welcome to Sub Zero Vodka Bar.
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