DIY Vodka

[via MetaFilter] A simple way

to make wine taste better is to decant it — to pour it from the bottle

into another container. Decanting wine mixes it with oxygen, which

improves the taste; you can make a $10 bottle wine like a $20 one with

this simple trick.

There are similar tricks with liquor. In an old James Bond novel — I

can’t remember which one — Bond had the habit of shaking pepper into

his vodka shots. He’d picked it up from the Russians, who did it as a

matter of safety rather thasn taste; the pepper dragged fusel oils left

over from their crude distilling process down to the bottom of the


A more useful trick that you can try at home: filtering cheap vodka through a Brita filter four times. Apparently it makes it as smooth and delicious as the expensive stuff.

3 replies on “DIY Vodka”

I think it would. I’m merely repeating what Ian Fleming wrote.

I did a little Googling (and admit it’s something I should’ve done in the first place) but I found that the pepper trick is from Moonraker. It’s summarized on Moonraker page in the Make Mine a 007 site as follows:

When the vodka arrives in a frosted carafe, M pours three fingers of the liquor for 007. Bond then takes a pinch of pepper and drops it in the vodka. Most of it settles to the bottom, but 007 uses his fingertip to dab up the remaining grains on the surface, and then knocks back the vodka. M gives him a look of �ironical inquiry.� Bond explains it�s a trick he learned while he was attached to the embassy in Moscow. The dash of pepper sends poisonous fusel oil from badly distilled vodka to the bottom of the glass. He adds that he got to like the taste, �But I shouldn�t have insulted the club Wolfschmidt.� M remarks, �So long as you don�t put pepper in Basildon�s favourite champagne.�

Maybe there’s where they got the idea of that Pepper vodka from Absolut. Now it’s just the taste we have with that variety, but back then it was used for the cheap vodka.

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