If only Peter the Great, tsar of Russia, had had the chance to taste this utterly unique and delicate vodka from Quinta do Pégo – a Danish-owned winery in Portugal’s beautiful Douro Valley – then the history of vodka might have looked differently.
Today, we usually refer to top quality vodka as a spirit with a neutral taste profile which can be drunk straight, or be mixed in various drinks, without imparting any flavour. The purpose of producing a vodka from black grapes from Quinta do Pégo is completely different.
From fun idea to ultra-premium
It all started, actually, as a fun experiment and developed since into a very ambitious project. 2.000 liters of fine Quinta do Pégo red wine, which originally were meant to be aged in French oak barriques, had to wave goodbye to quiet and slumber. Instead, the wine was distilled not just 4 times as is typical for premium vodka, but 6 times, and then filtrated to perfection, in order to reach the result in mind.
Pégo Vodka is an outstanding vodka with an utmost unique character and very subtle aromas reminiscent of red berries, lime peel and fennel seeds. In the mouth, it seduces with its velvety texture and fine hints of marzipan. The aftertaste is long, utterly pleasant, and leaves the whole tasting experience with a clear message in mind: a new category for ultra-premium vodka is hereby required. True artisanship – as far as it gets from mass-production.
Influenced by the valley
The richness and fruitiness of Pégo Vodka is obviously related to the climate of the Douro Valley which is optimal for growing olive trees, almond trees and particularly grape vines. The region is enhanced by beautiful mountains, breathtaking vine terraces, the river flowing with vital power, the soil consisting mainly of Phyllite (slate) and granite, as well as a relentless harsh sun and, from time to time, drought.
Not shaken, not stirred – how to serve Pégo Vodka
Pégo Vodka should be enjoyed straight and pure, either slightly chilled or at room temperature. Of course, it can also be mixed in various drinks – but why do such?
Very limited production
Only 570 bottles (70 cl) of Pégo Vodka have been made – a very limited number. Who knows if there ever will be a second batch? Just think, if Peter the Great had discovered the potential of the Douro Valley for producing premium vodka…
Quinta do Pégo winery
Located in the UNESCO World Heritage area of the Douro Valley, Quinta do Pégo has a history that goes all the way back to 1548 – and perhaps even further back to the Roman times. Historical documents prove the production of port wine and red wine from quality grapes coming from these exact vineyards, which today are classified as A-category, the highest score on a very criteria-specific quality scale endorsed to all vineyards in the valley. Since the year 2000, the Quinta do Pégo wines and port wines have repeatedly obtained high international recognition. Lately, in 2016, the wines and port wines were awarded gold medals at the highly respected international competition Mundus Vini. Not only was the winery’s flagship wine awarded the highest recognition, Double Gold, but it was also appointed as “Best of Show Portugal”.
Facts about vodka
Rye, wheat, oat and barley have been the original raw ingredients used for producing vodka, particularly in Russia and Poland. Later on came the use of corn, potatoes and other root vegetables rich in starch. By definition, vodka can be made from potatoes, corn or other agricultural produce which are fermented and whose resulting product is then distilled to a minimum of 37.5 % alcohol by volume. Pégo Vodka is produced from black grapes, which are fermented to red wine and thereafter distilled 6 times, reaching an alcohol of 40% by volume.