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Jan 8, 2004 02:10 PM

Non-grain vodka's?

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I'm trying to help out a friend who recently got diagnosed with an ailment that prevents him from ingesting most forms of grains i.e. wheat, rye ect... While he is dealing with the chow altering life adjustment, he cannot seem to find information on on the various ingredients in specific vodkas; his drink of choice. Any help on whether these vodkas exist would be much appreciated as I know very little about the process of making spirits. If it helps, he is allowed all rice and potato products. thanks

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  1. I would consult with a doctor, but doesn't "made from grain" as in alcohol differ greatly form eating grain? I would imagine if he is allowed alcohol at all it wouldn't matter what the source is.

    1 Reply
    1. re: AlanH

      This is what I'm told too, alcohol made of grain doesn't have gluten in it and is fine for celiac disease. I don't have any problem myself but do prefer potato vodka anyway, that's very easy to find. At least here on Long Island!

      Wow this is an old thread, but I'll leave this here anyway, what the heck.

      1. re: Sven

        From the website:

        Made from a delicate combination of soy isolates, the purest elements of the soy plant, and select grains, 3 Vodka gains its signature smoothness from the natural soy itself.

        Has Grains.

      2. Monopolova Vodka is 100% potato and is good and affordable. Should find it about anywhere.

        1 Reply
        1. re: rudeboy

          Chopin vodka is also made from potatoes (and it helps you play a mean nocturne). Gimme another glass of that spud!

        2. There's a Polish Vodka called Lubaskowa (insert Polish spell check here)that has been around forever and is really quite nice. It's also much cheaper + "cooler" than the overpriced new Polish Vodkas in the frosted bottles. I also heard about a new French vodka made from Grapes. Some of the Finnish Vodkas are made from Barley, but is Barley a grain? Now that we're on this topic what about a Kaska vodka? Kasha is technically a fruit, hell Kasha has been the life stuff of many Eastern Europeans and us descendents so lets go for broke and have some varniskes on the side w/that shot.

          4 Replies
          1. re: Ivan Stoler

            Barley is perhaps the most ancient domesticated grain.

            1. re: Karl


            2. re: Ivan Stoler

              Luksusowa, perhaps?

              As the page linked below suggests, its great with Aronia juice.

              Erik M.

              Link: http://www.luksusowa.net

              1. re: Erik M.


            3. It sounds like you are talking about celiac disease? If you are, distilled alcohols from grains are allowed on a gluten free diet.

              Therefore your friend can continue to consume vodka whether it be distilled from grain or something else.

              Hope this helps.

              10 Replies
              1. re: baruch

                This is COMPLETELY wrong information. I have celiac. I was diagnosed less than a month ago and have seen the nutritionist in the last week. You can NOT have alcohol distilled from grains. They are not safe.

                1. re: sunatrya

                  Great info. 5 years too late...

                  1. re: sunatrya

                    I don't see why vodka made from grains would be dangerous.

                    The process of making vodka (or any spirit) removes any chemical resembling glutin.

                    You ferment the sugars into alcohol. Distill off that alcohol and make something that is basically 100% alcohol. Then add water to make it drinkable.

                    No glutin, not even in whiskey. Totally safe.

                    1. re: BeanBoy

                      Distillation "properly" done would remove any impurities, such as glutin. On the other hand, distillation properly done would also result in "neutral grain spirit", which is not the a highly desired result for most liquors. Additionally, some liquors also add a myriad of undisclosed flavouring agents (though I don't know of any grain based flavouring agent besides adding in some grain mash to the end product, I also did not know what 2-methylimidazole or 4-methylimidazole was either until people started to get upset over them).

                      There is no FDA type standard to measure residual gluten in hard liquor, and there is not common consensus among experts. This is probably because when tested, some liquors have tested to have residual gluten and others have tested not to have residual gluten.

                      For distilled alcohol though, I think that recognizable "good" Vodka though is probaly safe, as that is closer to the flavourless profile, so they probably are distilling right and not adding weird stuff into the final product. As opposed to something like pre-packaged flavoured vodka shots that are sold in the fridge next to the bath salts.

                      Dietitians I think usually recommend eliminating everything that might contain gluten, including grain based distilled alcohol when initially going gluten free, then possibly re-introducing vetted alcohol products one at a time to ensure that the person with celiac disease knows for sure that that specific product is or is not contraindicated by their condition.

                      1. re: khuzdul

                        Any distiller who knows what they're doing will deliver a pure product.

                        I think everyone should care enough to look into what they are drinking, especially when it comes to spirits.

                        I agree, stay away from mass-produced, especially flavored vodkas. But a vodka like Hangar 1 is not going to have any impurities in it. (yes, I've been to the distillery and even seen the still in operation.)

                        Scotch, by definition, will have no glutin in it.

                        It surely won't hurt anyone, celiacs and non-celiacs, to look into what they are putting into their bodies. You might actually enjoy what's in your glass more than the club kids just tossing back a Popov and Redbull at 2:00AM. . . .

                        1. re: BeanBoy

                          Barley is one of the primary gluten-containing grains. I don't see why Scotch would by definition be gluten free.

                          We tried a gluten-free diet in our family for a few months to test a theory. It is very hard to determine whether someone with a gluten intolerance is ingesting gluten. It can take many months to feel better on a gluten-free diet and it takes years for the intestinal cells to revert to their normal histology.

                          If I were trying to be on a gluten-free diet, I would be very cautious about obtaining dietary information for a forum such as this.

                          www.kindredcocktails.com | Craft + Collect + Concoct + Categorize + Community

                          1. re: EvergreenDan

                            Here's the science Dan - Scotch is DISTILLED - the proteins in the malt don't evaporate - what evaporates is water, alcohol and other volatile compounds. But here's a link that suggests that what is true in theory may not be true in practice.

                            1. re: kagemusha49

                              Hmmm. No link found.

                              My point was that if you are concerned about vodka, distilled to 190 proof from fermented wheat, then you should be concerned about scotch distilled from malted barley distilled to a much lower proof. I realize that in theory the proteins aren't volatile, but I suspect that there may be contamination.

                              Gluten free is really tough because, unlike lactose intolerance for example, you don't know immediately whether you are eating it by mistake, and the consequences are permanent (and eventually fatal) intestinal damage. Therefore one should be extra cautious about internet sources of information by people like us who aren't experts.

                              1. re: EvergreenDan

                                I'm not sure why the link didn't post. Essentially we're in agreement because the linked material cited several cases of people who couldn't handle distilled grains.

                                1. re: EvergreenDan

                                  It is the alcohol from the sugars that makes it into any distilled spirit. The only other things that come across in the distillation process are volatile oils, some of which are toxic.

                                  Regardless, if you don't want to ingest something that was produced from a source that contained gluten, don't. There are some great drinks out there that are not. Potato Vodka can be great!! St George Spirits vodka is amazing (since they flavor with herbs and fruits even the flavored stuff won't have gluten.)

                                  But scientifically, unless something is added to a spirit after the distillation process there won't be any gluten proteins in the beverage. Here's a good link: