Food - Drink
Is Vodka Really Made From Potatoes?
You may think that most vodka is made from potatoes, but before this crop arrived in Europe, vodka was made from grains such as corn, rice, and wheat; most vodka is still made from these grains today. However, vodka "can be distilled from any agricultural product containing sugar or starch,” says Vinepair, including potatoes, beets, and rice.
The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau defines vodka as a "neutral spirit distilled or treated after distillation with charcoal or other materials," and "bottled at not less than 40% alcohol by volume (ABV)." Some distilleries also make vodka from grapes, hempseed, and even coffee pulp, the fruit around the coffee bean.
However, the most important part of vodka is actually water, since it makes up about 60% of the spirit. The quality of water can have a major impact on the taste of vodka, and high-quality vodkas use water sourced from springs and glaciers. Keep the flavor and quality of water you use for ice in mind when serving vodka neat.