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Latest and last in Elit pristine water series

Stolichnaya used the TFWA World Exhibition & Conference 2014 to showcase the final edition in its Elit pristine water series, the Andean edition, exclusively to the travel retail trade. There are only 250 bottles of this ultra premium vodka available for global distribution.

First introduced in 2011 with the Himalayan edition, followed by the New Zealand edition last year, the series explores the concept of ‘terroir’, the idea that a place has the power to influence the flavour profile of a spirit. For each of the Elit pristine water series editions, Stolichnaya says its master craftsmen "scoured the world for the most exquisite water sources from which to craft the ultimate limited edition vodka". This year, they trekked to the Colico Lake in the La Araucanía region of Chile, to a natural spring flowing from the foothills of the Andes Mountains. 

“To craft a truly exemplary vodka, one with subtle taste and extraordinary clarity, you must begin with water, the purest of all elements,” says Rob Cullins, global commercial director of the SPI Group. “Our quest for water purity took us around the world to the crystal waters of Colico Lake, where the unique balance of minerals ensured the third and final edition in our elit pristine water series would emphasise our heritage of craftsmanship.”

The water is combined with the Russian Alpha Spirit at the Latvijas Balzams distillery in Latvia, where Stolichnaya vodkas have been produced and bottled for more than 65 years. The spirit is made from a single source of grain harvested from SPI Group’s Raduga farming operation in Tambov, Russia, where the land is so fertile that it is farmed without fertilisers or pesticides. The rich and flavourful blend is then filtered with a freeze-filtration process at -18 degrees Celsius.

This limited edition vodka comes in a hand-cut crystal bottle by Glencairn Crystal, one of the world's leading crystal houses, designed to refract light and enhance the liquid’s clarity. Every bottle is sealed with a silver medallion overlaid with gold and crowned with a ruby depicting the elit by Stolichnaya flame. The bottle is then nestled in a Chilean black cherrywood case that is lined with leather.

Said Glencairn's product development director, Scott Davidson: "We were delighted to be approached by Stolichnaya to design and provide the decanter for this very exclusive product and this is the first time that we have provided decanters for the exclusive vodka market."

The Elit pristine water series is 40% ABV (80 proof), retailing for €3,000 per numbered bottle (250 bottles worldwide). Andean edition will be available to travel retail from November 2014.

4 November 2014 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor