“The quality of the final product will always be reflected by what you put in from the beginning,” explains Thomas Kuuttanen, who just recently was awarded the title “Global Master Blender of the Year.”
However, it takes a true artisan to transform fine ingredients, such as locally grown organic winter wheat with malted barley, into award-winning vodka. “Making mainstream vodka is easy. However, I’m not about doing things the easy way. I’m looking for perfection.”
And the perfect vodka for Kuuttanen involves a unique distillation process. “Instead of just a few very aggressive distillations, which is the industry standard, we have created a very slow distillation process which maintains the character of ingredients in a unique way. The exact number 34 is no coincidence. During the development, we have tried just about every number of distillations, and 34 is the golden mean of vodka.” In fact, when it comes to Purity Vodka distillation, it’s all about survival of the purest. Roughly 90% of the liquid is lost during the rigorous, labor-intensive distillation process. What is left is the finest 10% that’s so flavorful and pure, no more filtration is needed.
Granted, the average person heading to the bar may not care about the intricate details, but the magic number of 34 provides drinkers with a superior cocktail experience.
“With a smaller number, we would need to do every distillation a bit faster, resulting in a vodka with more of a burn. A greater number would require slower distillation, which would result in a more robust vodka with less mixability in cocktails.”
– Thomas Kuuttanen
He added, “You might not taste Purity Vodka in your cocktail, but you will surely notice that it makes the quality of your drinks better. Industrial vodka can never offer you that experience.”
So, how does the award-winning master blender enjoy his Purity Vodka? “My favorites are Purity Martini or just on the rocks. But I will leave it to each and every drinker to find their own favorite drink.”
For Kuuttanen, it’s not about the astounding number of gold medals, (134 of them, in fact) attached to his product; it’s about the everyday consumer. The meticulous nature of slow distillation took nearly ten years to perfect. And that type of well-crafted vodka plays well in today’s market where connoisseurship is seemingly at an all-time high.
“We do finally see a vodka revolution coming. It is very similar to the development when consumers went from industrial, mainstream beer to quality-focused craft beer. And tequila. And bourbon … Consumers of today are much more concerning and demanding. And they have every right to be.”
– Thomas Kuuttanen
Of course, with a revolution comes strong competition. It seems silly to go through all that effort to distill vodka 34 times only to have the product sit on shelves. Thus, it behooves a vodka maker to pay attention to packaging. Kuuttanen states, “In a world crowded with tall, frosted bottles, we wanted Purity Vodka to be presented in a bottle with a design as unique as the taste. Inspired by our distillation process, we focused on purity and cuts in the design, resulting in a bottle reminiscent of a diamond.”
Then again, when you can boast six straight Grand Vodka Master titles from the annual Grand Spirits Masters Competition, it’s likely your reputation precedes you. “Everything we do is different from the competition,” says Kuuttanen. “Most vodka brands are aiming to please everyone by producing mainstream vodka, which all, more or less, taste the same. My ambition is to produce vodka that stands out from the crowd in both quality and character.”
For more on Purity Vodka, visit PurityVodka.com.