Vodka is Passé

According to Food & Wine, Vodka is passé. At least that’s how Wall Street Journal writer Eric Felten sees it after reading Food & Wine’s Cocktails ’09. The magazine lists the signature cocktails of prominent bartenders (or would they prefer mixologists now days?) and there is a sharp decline in vodka cocktails for 2009. Eric Felten heralds it a welcome sign of vodka’s decline. He may be mistaken.

Felten goes on to lament the sugary, bizarre martinis that have been on the rise in bars across the nation, then praises bartenders for branching out to new alcoholic beverages, like brandy wines of Italy and South America, or a renewed interest in rum-based cocktails. He refers to vodka as merely “a way to inject unobtrusive alcoholic content into sugary drinks.” If this is what vodka is, I agree with Felten. Good riddance.

As you may have guessed, I have a different opinion of the spirit. I’m sure most of you agree that there is more to vodka than the stuff you put it in. Vodka is a spirit with subtleties most drinkers never take the time to explore. Furthermore, it’s not the dining cognoscenti that are out hitting the bars ordering vodka and Red Bull by the bucket.

I’ll let the fine diner types drink vodka-free designer cocktails. I’ll keep my vodka straight, or maybe with a nice juice blend if the situation warrants.

Robert Brodrecht

  • Rich

    Being a college student myself (at least for one more month) let me firmly state that vodka is certainly not passe on the college campus. Vodka is by far the most popular alcoholic drink on my campus other than dirt cheap beer. The most common brands I can think of being Svedka and Smirnoff and for those severely concerned with getting drunk the cheapest way possible: Crystal Palace (I do not recommend this vodka to anyone, the taste is awful and the hangovers are hellacious). Vodka and cranberry is probably the most popular method of drinking it here, followed closely by vodka mixed with any of a myriad of energy drinks (red bull, monster, amp, no fear, you name it everyone has their favorite). I am also a big fan of tequila but I would have to say my favorite and most versatile alcohol I keep in stock is vodka.


  • Katy

    This is my favorite rebuttal to Mr. Felton’s bizarre vodka obituary.

    He’s missing Pinky Vodka from that list and otherwise, it’d be perfect. :)


    • Robert

      @Katy, it is perfect! Pinky is #23 on his list. He did a good job on the debunk. I wonder if Eric Felten will bother to retract his opinion, given that plenty of people disagree. I guess, like many pundits, stirring up false controversy in the spirits industry is a great way to get more hits. Weak!


Share Your Thoughts

Name and e-mail are required. Your e-mail will not be published. Be nice! We delete mean stuff.