For most people, the ingredients in their vodka are the least of their concerns. The bigger concern is taste. After all, you mixed up a delicious Bloody Mary or Moscow Mule because you want something tasty to sip on while catching up with friends – not because you’re trying to be healthy or stay true to your organic diet.
But why should we think about the ingredients in our vodka? We’re so concerned about whether the fruits and veggies we eat at lunch are organic and whether or not the chicken we eat for dinner was raised on a sustainable farm. However, when it comes to drinks, we tend to neglect source of the ingredients entirely.
Maybe it’s because, until recently, there weren’t very many organic alcohol options at the market. However, this has changed and we’re here to tell you why you should be drinking as clean as you eat.
You should care just as much about the ingredients in your cocktails as you do the ingredients in your sandwiches, smoothies, soups, salads, pastas, etc.
Now we realize that alcohol, specifically vodka, is a whole new ballgame. When you look at ingredients in your soup or salad, you know which types of buzzwords to keep an eye out for that signal whether that meal meets your dietary preferences.
But the ingredients label (or lack thereof) on vodka is a little bit different. Most vodkas tell you what ingredient the vodka is made from (wheat, corn, rye, barley, sugar) and whether any natural or artificial flavors were added.
…Not much to work with right? Wrong!
As we now know, most American vodkas are made from corn. Corn is the #1 genetically modified grain in the U.S. all thanks to agricultural giant Monsanto.
But why are genetically modified grains a cause for concern? Not only are the health consequences of eating genetically modified organisms largely unknown, but they contain large amounts of pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides – poisons that should never be ingested or allowed to run off into our water supply.
There are a few words in most vodka labels that should have your ears ringing if you want to drink just as organically as you can eat: “natural or artificial flavors.”
Ah yes, those notorious vodka flavors that were oh so fun when the concept first came out, but have evolved to be more and more ridiculous as time has passed. Flavors like apple, cherry, lemon, and vanilla make sense – after all, they are all real things that can be found in nature.
In fact, infusing vodka with fruits, roots, flowers, herbs, and spices dates back centuries. It is a natural way to add your favorite flavors to your favorite spirit.
But recently, we’ve seen an influx in newer more “artificial-sounding” flavors. We’re talking about whipped cream-flavored vodka, buttered popcorn-flavored vodka, even peanut butter and jelly-flavored vodka!
And just like that, a spirit with a rich history and otherwise pure chemical makeup became muddled with artificial chemicals and flavorings made by scientists in a laboratory.
Of course, some commercial-flavored vodkas still start with whole fruits and have a proprietary extraction and infusion process. However, the majority of the time, these flavors are created in a lab and sold to distilleries.
This is where vodka loses its natural quality and becomes artificial and overproduced. It is the flavorings, colorings, and mixers that some vodka distillers include that add calories and turn an otherwise natural spirit into an artificial concoction.
Carolyn O’Neil, a registered dietitian and author of The Dish On Eating Healthy & Being Fabulous notes: “It’s the mixers, syrups, and sodas that really get people into calorie trouble, because most drinks start with 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits that only have around 96 calories, but mixologists can easily turn that into a drink with hundreds of calories.”
We Want to Bring Vodka Back to It’s Roots
We created Hope Vodka because we believe that you should be able to drink just as naturally as you can eat. Just because vodka is an alcohol doesn’t mean that you have to ingest artificial ingredients that don’t meet your dietary standards.
Made from sustainably sourced wheat, cane, and corn, Hope Vodka is free of natural and artificial flavorings – providing you with the clean, pure vodka you deserve. After all, who needs flavorings when the vodka is exceptional by itself?