A Man Named Beveridge Founded The Beverage Company
The founder of Tito’s Handmade Vodka Bert Butler Beveridge II is a compelling figure for a number of reasons. He not only has the most on-the-nose name for the CEO of a beverage company, he also named his vodka brand after his nickname: Tito .
Beveridge didn’t start out as a spirits entrepreneur. The Texan had quite a winding path to becoming a celebrated distiller. He spent the beginning of his career in oil after majoring in geology and geophysics at the University of Texas at Austin. However, Beveridge’s first entrepreneurial ventures were not meant to be. According to Austin Monthly, he founded his own oil company, went bankrupt, and then his own drilling company which also folded. After the volatility of the oil industry became too much, he pivoted to mortgage sales. Adrift in his career, Beveridge took up a hobby of infusing store-bought vodka with various flavors, which he then gifted to friends.
Little did he know that the passion project would soon turn profitable, to say the least. Beveridge who is estimated to be worth $4.8 billion made the Forbes 400 list in 2021. That’s quite an acheivement for a man who had no idea what he wanted to do for the first decades of adulthood.
Ok But Whats Vodka Made From
Vodka is made from alcohol that is created by fermenting some sort or high starch or sugar plant matter with yeast. The most common types of plant matter used are cereal grains, like wheat, corn, rye or potatoes. Some brands that use these products for their mash are Ketel One, Titos, Belvedere and Luksusowa, respectively.
Vodka can also be made from fruit, like grapes, and sugar cane. Milk whey can even be used for the mash, like the English brand Black Cow does. Grain- and potato-based vodkas tend to have a more neutral profile than fruit- and sugar-based vodkas and are the traditional way to produce the spirit.
The yeast strain used to convert the sugar molecules into alcohol is specific to each brand, and is considered a closely guarded secret. If the plant matter used is heavy in starch, enzymes are also added to first convert the starch into sugar for the yeast to eat.
Once the alcohol is created, the raw spirit is distilled, diluted and filtered to make vodka.
The Untold Truth Of Tito’s Handmade Vodka
If you’re a vodka drinker or even if you aren’t you’re likely more than familiar with Tito’s Handmade. You can find it at most bars and essentially every liquor store in the country. While the United States isn’t typically associated with vodka production, Tito’s is distilled in Austin, Texas. The vodka has only been around since 1997 but it is now more popular here than varieties from Russia or Poland .
Ringing in at around $20 for a fifth, Tito’s may not be considered a top-shelf vodka, but don’t let that lower price point scare you away. Alcohol experts report that vodka pricing is often based on marketing and image anyway, not to mention that many vodka lovers swear by Tito’s, including Mashed . Here’s everything you need to know about Tito’s before you order your next vodka soda or dirty martini.
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We Know Tito’s Is Distilled From Corn But Not Much Else About How It’s Produced
Bert “Tito” Beveridge is open about his fascinating origin story as a vodka maker, but keeps pretty tight-lipped about the specifics around his eponymous vodka. What we do know is that it is a grain vodka rather potato which is typical for many other versions of the spirit. Specifically, it’s made with 100% corn.
So how did Beveridge create his recipe for Tito’s? According to the Tito’s Handmade Vodka website, it wasn’t exactly easy to teach yourself in the pre-internet days of the ’90s. Beveridge eventually uncovered photos showing how vodka was made during prohibition. Distillers at that time would create stills apparatuses used for distilling with a copper pipe and an outdoor fryer . Beveridge says he tried countless recipes and just kept messing with his formula until he thought his spirit was better than the two best vodkas he had tasted. What he ended up with was a vodka that can be enjoyed straight or so the company claims.
Other than that, we don’t know a lot about Tito’s distilling process especially in its current day iteration. When Forbes visited the distillery back in 2013, its photographer was directed away from the buildings housing its current-day operations. According to Eater, its likely given the scale of the company’s manufacturing that the vodka is made by re-distilling a pre-made grain-neutral spirit.
Diva Premium Vodka $1 Million
DIVA doesnt use gold in its vodka production, but it does involve precious stones for a truly luxurious taste. This brand, a favourite amongst celebrities, is distilled multiple times to ensure a smooth flavour profile and comes with more precious stones stored inside the bottle. Once empty, the stones can be kept as a keepsake.
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Tito’s Handmade Vodka Financed By 19 Credit Cards
Once Tito was satisfied with his product, he tried to find investors. But no one was interested. Not least because there was no legally approved distillery in Texas at that time, and people found it hard to believe that someone should get the official permit to do so anytime soon.
Determined to get his spirit on the market, Tito Beveridge took all his savings, maxed out 19 credit cards, managed to get the permit, built his one-man-distillery, and went into business. However, business gave him a hard time for another eight years before things finally started to work out. Until then, he hand-bottled his Vodka, glued the label on, and drove around the state to introduce Tito’s Handmade Vodka to bars and liquor stores.
Today, Tito’s is the bestselling Vodka in the United States and made Beveridge a billionaire. In 2020, it was the highest-selling distilled spirit by volume, with over 10 million nine-liter cases sold. But nothing is all roses, and some people started to express their doubts about the “Handmade” in Tito’s. But I want to get to that later on. First, let’s see how Tito’s Vodka is produced in general.
Which Vodkas Are Made With Corn
The Top Vodkas Made from Corn
- 8 Titos Vodka. Neutral.
- 7 Crystal Head Vodka. Sweet & Harsh.
- 6 Cutlers Vodka. Sweet & Rich.
- 5 Smithworks American Made Vodka. Neutral.
- 4 Prairie Organic Vodka. Neutral & Grain.
- 3 Big Spring Spirits Vodka. Grain & Neutral.
- 2 Stolichnaya Gluten Free. Neutral & Grain.
- 1 Nikka Coffey Vodka. Neutral & Rich.
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Titos Began In A Pot Still Which Is Uncommon For Vodka
Vodka tends to be made in column stills, which means putting any starch-containing distillate content on the top of a massive column and flushing it with incredibly hot steam. Beveridge originally chose a pot still instead a more labor-intensive process, but one that is widely recognized for producing high-quality spirits. Based on current production, it is believed that Titos now uses a combination of column and pot stills.
Is Titos Vodka Keto
Titos Handmade Vodka is considered suitable for a ketogenic diet because Titos Vodka contains no net carbs, total carbs, and fats.
While Titos may have 98 calories per 1.5 ounces, this value comes solely from the vodkas ethanol content.
Nonetheless, Titos Vodka should still be consumed in moderation because vodka is intoxicating.
Moreover, keto diets should have a limited alcohol intake of 1-2 drinks daily.
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What Is The Highest Rated Vodka
With the help of our experts, below youll find a curated list of the best vodkas to get right now.Best Overall: Hangar 1. Best for Sipping: Absolut Elyx. Best Flavored: Ketel One Cucumber & Mint. Best for Bloody Marys: Hanson of Sonoma Habanero. Best Polish: Belvedere Smogory Forest. Best for Moscow Mules: Titos.More itemsApr 19, 2021
Titos Handmade Vodka Review By Ben
Finally got around to trying this vodka. Normally, it sells for $20 or more in my area, so I wasnt in any hurry. I recently saw a fifth for $16.99 and I had to act. I took a cold shot and was impressed by how easy it was to drink. It went down easy like Svedka, but there was no bad aftertaste. I followed with a shot of Sobieski, which was more noticable going down and had a stronger aftertaste. I capped it off by shooting Titos one more time and came away impressed. Titos is probably the best vodka Ive had thus far. Of the 16 brands Ive tried in 2009, this one is tops.
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Beveridge Is Good At Science
He graduated from the University of Texas majoring in geology and geophysics, and, pre-booze-making, he held jobs in the oil business as a well-site geologist, a subsurface mapper, and a seismic data processor. He spent some time as a mortgage broker, too, before the entrepreneur spirit led him to spirits.
How You Can Apply It:
Any business can benefit from word of mouth. An easy way for smaller brands to utilize this strategy is to use ambassadors! Let a select few people try out your products and ask them to share their experiences on their social media. This can extend your reach and gather more interest in what you have to offer.
Did You Know? Founder Bert Beveridges full first name is Bertito. His friends called him Tito, which was the inspiration behind the companys name!
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Is Titos Vodka Top Shelf
While there are many vodkas to explore, a few vodka brands have risen to the top. They are reliable, reasonably priced, and appear on nearly every liquor store shelf and back bar across the globe. Names like Absolut, Ketel One, Van Gogh, and Titos are among the most popular premium vodkas on the market.
How Is Tito’s Vodka Made
In the early days of Tito’s Vodka, it was produced in a self-made 16-gallon pot still cobbled together by Beveridge. For that, according to him, he used two kegs of Dr. Pepper, a turkey-frying rig, photos of prohibition-era stills – and surely a lot of creativity. He named it Mockingbird Distillery after the Texan state bird for good luck. And he produced, filled, sealed, labeled, and distributed every single bottle for a long while.
Even though those days lie in the past, Tito’s Vodka is still produced in old-fashioned pot stills. And that is pretty uncommon for Vodka, as the majority of brands use column stills for their production. Working with pot stills is more labor-intensive. However, it’s the preferred method when you aim to produce spirits of the highest quality.
Details on the production process are a well-kept secret. They only reveal that their corn mash gets distilled no less than six times. And the method is supposed to be similar to that of single malt Scotch or French cognac. But based on the large production volumes, experts assume that they now use a combination of pot and column stills. Tito’s never confirmed this, though.
Tito’s gets distilled from 100% corn with the help of only water and yeast. They also don’t add mash later on during the process as some others may do. That’s why it is entirely naturally gluten-free.
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What Is Smirnoff Vodka Made From
Smirnoff was founded in Moscow and is owned by Diageo, a British-based company. It is distributed in over 130 countries worldwide.
Much like Titos, Smirnoff vodka is made by fermenting corn and is unaged. Their vodka is triple distilled to achieve a higher level of purity and quality. The vodka is then charcoal filtered to remove additional impurities and unwanted elements.
Smirnoff is a leading vodka brand and offers a plethora of flavored vodkas.
If youre looking to shake up your next party, heres a fun cocktail recipe:
The Smirnoff Ocean Breeze Punch
The Smirnoff Ocean Breeze Punch is a light, citrusy drink that is perfect for a warm summers day. It is super easy to make and will impress your party guests.
To make the Ocean Breeze Punch youll need:
- 1 ½ cups of Smirnoffs No.21 Vodka
- 1 ½ cups of Blue Curacao
- 2 cups of lemonade
- A ton of lemon wheels
All you have to do is mix all the ingredients into a large bowl. Dont forget the ice! and stir well. Add some lemon wheels and youre ready to go!
Final Thoughts On These Vodkas
Like with all cocktails and spirits, preference is subjective. It all comes down to what you want to drink and how much money you want to spend. But at the end of the day, Tito’s is our winner.
All we have to say about Grey Goose is this: kudos to their marketing team. Grey Goose is probably the most recognizable spirit of the three we tried and our least favorite.
We hypothesize that it may work in some cocktails, perhaps the Cosmo. But for now, we think Tito’s and Belvedere are superior.
For a high-end vodka, Belvedere is a great choice, especially for a martini or a dessert-style cocktail. I would definitely choose Belvedere over Grey Goose for this price range.
But, we both agree that Tito’s Handmade Vodka is the best value for the money. It is smooth, easy to drink, and mixes well in pretty much anything.
For our tasting reactions and more commentary, or to watch me make funny faces, check out our Tasting Room video. And, if you have a minute, check out Tito’s Handmade Vodka website. It’s hilarious.
Thanks for visiting the blog for episode one of The Tasting Room. Go check out our cocktail recipes and other episodes of The Tasting Room here on alchemix.bar and on YouTube!
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Is Titos Vodka Real Vodka
Titos Handmade Vodka is considered craft vodka, and craft vodka is not regarded by many distillers and connoisseurs as true vodka.
For a vodka to be , the vodka has to be produced in small quantities with higher quality ingredients and strict supervision.
Titos Vodka started this way with pot stills, which means that Titos produced vodkas per batch, and each batch took longer than column distilled vodkas to complete.
In contrast, the column still runs continuously and does not need to be cleaned after each use, therefore allowing distillers to produce more vodkas in a shorter time frame.
However, theres a debate whether Titos is still handmade since Titos vodka is meeting a nationwide demand for Titos vodka.
Regardless, alcohol enthusiasts believe that theres no difference between craft vodka and true vodka in terms of overall quality.
Besides, Titos vodka meets all the requirements of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, which means Titos vodka products are legally classified as vodka.
This Absolut Bottle Of Vodka Is Actually Better Than You Might Think
We know what you’re thinking Absolut Vodka is what you drink in college when you can get grapefruit, citron, or lime-flavored vodka that actually just tastes like a hangover. But we promise you that the Absolut Elyx is different. As noted by Reserve Bar, the Absolut Elyx Vodka is made from “single estate winter wheat” and “pure water,” which makes the drink really smooth. Absolut even coined the term “liquid silk” to describe the Elyx, so if we couldn’t have made it any clearer, this is not the vodka of your frat days.
But why just trust us when there are other people who can help convince you that Absolut Elyx is worth giving a try? Customers took to Influenster to share their thoughts on Elyx, with one saying that they found it affordable and was also “smooth and great for mixing drinks.” They wrote, “I am a first time buyer and would purchase again in the future.” Another customer noted that the Elyx vodka went “down very smooth without needing it mixed” and that they could see it “becoming popular.” So give it a try it won’t disappoint.
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The Founder Had To Go Into Credit Card Debit To Get Started
Because Texas had never licensed a distillery, people were initially doubtful that Tito’s Handmade Vodka was going to go anywhere. Founder Bert Beveridge had a very difficult time attracting investors with three different rounds of fundraising failing completely, reports Austin Monthly. So, he ended up racking up $88,000 in credit card debt on 19 different cards just to raise the capital he needed to get distilling operations going . With that money, Beveridge purchased 13 acres of land in the Austin area. He was able to talk the seller down to $33,000 and gave him a $3,000 credit card check as a cash advance, he tells Forbes.
Tito’s Handmade Vodka finally hit stores in 1997, however, the company didn’t turn any profit for its first eight years in business . It wasn’t until 2001 that the company had its big break. That’s when the vodka won the double gold medal for best vodka at San Francisco World Spirits Competition and catapulted itself into the billion dollar business it is today, reports Forbes.
Kors Vodka 24k George V Limited Edition $24500
Kors combines delicious vodka and history in its bottles. Each bottle is handmade out of crystal and its recipe is an ancient one ordered by Russias Czar Nicholas II. Its thought that the Czar created it as the perfect-tasting vodka using a complex method involving solid gold pipes and infusing it with diamonds. Its limited edition label comes from the fact that only 250 bottles of this vodka were ever released.
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