In a round white booth shaped like a traditional Siberian yurt, photos of the region’s wildly beautiful landscape were streamed on walls as I sampled this new super premium vodka from Siberia alongside heaping spoonfuls of briny caviar.
The taste actually lived up to its story. The two major ingredients are what make it special. The founders, a former CEO of Group Baron Philippe de Rothschild, his former Russian export director, and two other well-connected wealthy Russians, combed Siberia to select the purest H2O from three pristine areas — Lake Baikal, deep below the permafrost of Yakutia, above the Arctic Circle, and in the mountains of Altai between Mongolia and Kazakhstan. The second key, they say, is using super pure Alpha grade spirit distilled from Siberian winter rye and resilient wheat actually grown under the snow.
The taste is softer, smoother and more delicate than most vodkas, very pure and elegant, like biting snowflakes on your tongue. The name Taiga refers to the forest and vast region in Siberia where the water is sourced, while shtof is an ancient Russian term meaning the traditional bottle from which Russians used to drink vodka.