As a child, you were probably told not to put beverages in the freezer, as they would either take a long time to thaw out or burst open and make a mess. However, you may have learned as an adult that putting alcohol in the freezer can lead to a cold drink without freezing solid. But, according to Francois Thibault, the creator of Grey Goose vodka, over-chilling your vodka can mask its delicate flavor.
Vodka, unlike beer and wine, does not freeze in a standard household freezer due to its high alcohol content. 80-proof vodka, or 40% alcohol, needs to be at around -16 degrees F to freeze, while the average freezer temperature is around 0 degrees F.
Not all alcoholic beverages have the same freezing point, as it depends on the alcohol content. Low-alcohol beers and wines tend to freeze solid, while liqueurs with around 20% alcohol may become slushy. Any beverage with 32% alcohol or higher, like vodka, should be safe to store at sub-freezing temperatures.
The difference in freezing points is related to the alcohol’s volatile content. Vodka, being a simpler spirit, has fewer volatiles than other beverages such as whiskey, which obtains much of its distinct character from this volatiles. According to Kevin Liu, Chief Cocktail Maker at The Tin Pan, freezing whiskey does not destroy any of its volatiles, but it does make them harder to detect.
A premium vodka, such as Grey Goose, is said to have “sophisticated aromas and flavors” that are best appreciated at temperatures between 32 and 39 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Thibault. He recommends vodka be served on the rocks or chilled in a refrigerator, but not frozen.
It’s important to note that while vodka can be stored in the freezer without freezing solid, this doesn’t mean that it should be. The extremely cold temperature can alter the taste and complexity of the vodka, making it less enjoyable to drink. This is why many experts recommend storing vodka in the refrigerator, or chilling it in a shaker before serving, rather than freezing it. This ensures that the vodka is cold enough to be refreshing, but not so cold that the flavor is compromised.
Another thing to consider when it comes to freezing vodka is the type of container it’s stored in. Glass bottles are not as flexible as plastic and can crack or break in the freezer. To avoid this, it is recommended to transfer the vodka to a plastic container before freezing or to be cautious and make sure the bottle is meant to be frozen and the container is secure before doing so.
In conclusion, while vodka can be stored in the freezer without freezing solid, like the Asda Smirnoff or Kirkland vodka, it’s important to note that this doesn’t mean that it should be. Freezing vodka can mask its delicate flavors and change the overall drinking experience, especially for premium vodka like Grey Goose. It’s best to store vodka in the refrigerator or chill it before serving, rather than freezing it, in order to preserve its complex aroma and taste, like the Grey Goose proof. When it comes to flavored vodka, like Lemon Vodka, citron alcohol, or lemon drop with Absolut Citron, freezing can also diminish the taste of the added flavor. But, regardless of where it’s stored, be sure to pay attention to the container and don’t use a standard glass bottle unless you’re sure it’s safe, especially when it comes to lower proof liquor like the pink lemonade liquor or alcoholic lemonade. One should also be aware that Absolut vodka made from, like the pinnacle alcohol, lemonade liquor and lemonade alcohol, might not have the same storage rules as another vodka.