Vodka Distilled 18 Times


L’Chaim Vodka is distilled no less than 18 times. In an excellent website (www.theendofvodka.com), VeeV Acai Liqueur pokes fun at the vodkas distilled 3, 5, 23, 570 times. The site is funny, pretty, and makes a good point. It tends to suggest that after the first couple of distillations, and after pushing the spirit past 190 proof, it’s a fairly pointless exercise to distill it more.

Virtuoso Distillers, of Mishawaka, Indiana, is undaunted. In box 19 of the L’Chaim approval, Steven Ross patiently explains that the vodka is distilled 18 times. TTB frequently asks for such a confirmation, when the label sets forth the number of distillations or filtrations. This is odd because the label already claims it under penalty of perjury, the certification doesn’t seem to make it any more likely to be true, and it would seem to be a minor point in any event (for the reasons suggested by VeeV).

Mr. Ross has a lot more going on, on this label. He further explains that L’Chaim (or, “To Life”) is similar to “cheers,” carefully avoiding any suggestion that it’s about health. This is not a small matter because, prior to this approval, the term was rarely used in a prominent way on US alcohol beverage labels. Mr. Ross explains that the letters that spell L’Chaim also “add up to the number 18.”

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5 Responses to “Vodka Distilled 18 Times”

  1. October 7th, 2009 at 10:08 am

    Rob says:

    What a waste of time to distill something 18 times? This raises the question of what is the definition of a distillation? If he has 6 plates on his still does he run it through 3 times and call it 18 times distilled? Is this legal per the TTB?

  2. November 9th, 2009 at 12:47 pm

    bc says:

    I’ve seen it being made at his distellery, and it has been shown to me the 18 different “chambers” (because I don’t know the right word) that it goes through in the process. It’s amazing vodka, plain and simple.

  3. July 4th, 2010 at 1:47 pm

    Kris says:

    The amount of times distilled is no joke to me. I have an allergy to brewer’s yeast (in all alcohol), and do not react to vodkas distilled 5 times or more. I will have a reaction to any vodka that is distilled 3 times or less every time. I have tried “excellent” vodkas that were very expensive, but only distilled 3 times or less, and have reacted. I have tried cheap vodkas that were distilled 5 times, and never had a reaction.

  4. July 26th, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    paul says:

    Distilling through “18 different “chambers”” does not mean it is distilled 18 times. Most likely you witnessed one distillation through a column with 18 plates.

  5. April 21st, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    Chuck Walker says:

    Who falls for this crap? seriously…

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