FORBES CZ: Interview with Nemiroff Brand Ambassador Julia Terletska

12 minutes
De Luxe
The Inked Collection

In 2021, Nemiroff vodka received the prestigious title of “Taste Master” as Vodka of the Year in the Global Spirit Masters competition. Ambassador of Nemiroff, Julia Terletska, discusses with Forbes Czech Republic the uncompromising quality of ingredients, Ukrainian tradition, and global market expansion in the interview. 

What is your company’s philosophy regarding product quality? 

Nemiroff has earned over 135 awards for its taste and quality, including the prestigious Taste Master title in the renowned Global Spirit Masters competition. Participation in various competitions ensures the objectivity of results, while consistently winning awards over several years confirms our dedication to perfection. 

Competitions are not just about awards for us; they also provide valuable feedback. By participating in these competitions and bartending shows worldwide, such as TWFA, we gain invaluable insights into our products, gather opinions from respected sommeliers, collect new tasting notes, and receive valuable feedback from our customers. 

We are relentless – we set ambitious goals and are not afraid to take risks. This drives us to constantly push boundaries in every aspect of our craft and set new standards in flavors, design, technology, and blends. The global recognition bestowed upon us by the “Taste Master” title reflects and culminates our philosophy: brand expertise plus uncompromising quality plus the tireless pursuit of perfection. 

What makes your beverages unique? 

Nemiroff excels in the art of producing the highest quality vodka in Ukraine. Water purification, ingredient selection, product protection, intricate design, and our exclusive distillery’s production range – we oversee every step: 

• We carefully select the finest natural ingredients, primarily sourced from Ukraine. Our commitment to using 100% natural local ingredients, with the sole exception of pepper, sets us apart. 

• We proudly avoid artificial flavors, fragrances, and even natural colorings. 

• We have gone the extra mile to find the purest natural water, drawn directly from our wells. 

• We use premium Lux-class wheat alcohol, ensuring a refined taste. 

• We’ve developed a unique set of filtrations, guaranteeing unparalleled purity. 

Furthermore, we never cease to explore possibilities for improvement and innovation. While adhering to global quality standards, we remain authentically rooted in our heritage. We uphold and respect traditions embodied in our iconic Ukrainian drink – honey and pepper – a warming and artistic vodka, a testament to our homeland’s attraction. When you choose Nemiroff, you’re choosing a brand that leaves no stone unturned. 

Nemiroff boasts a tradition of over 150 years. Can you describe the current preferences and demands of your customers? 

Our customers seek more; they are individuals dedicated to personal growth, possessing bold character and inner strength. Nemiroff customers listen to their instincts. They know what they want and how to achieve it with minimal effort. They are highly sociable but have a tight circle of closest friends. 

They are always in the spotlight, yet not seeking it. Their beverage expectations mirror their life choices: unwavering expertise, exceptional quality, and an innovative offering that elevates their status. Our goal is to constantly evolve while staying true to our core identity, providing the rejuvenation that meets and even surpasses their expectations, all without compromising our authenticity. 

What is the origin of the raw materials used in Nemiroff vodka production? Do you have any regional partners for raw material supply? 

To create unforgettable flavors, we utilize the fertile Ukrainian soil. We use premium grain food ethyl alcohol made from Ukrainian wheat. Nemiroff vodka is produced using traditional and artisanal methods, a testament to the rich heritage of the region, relying on local traditions, natural ingredients, and the complete absence of automation. 

Count Potocki, known for his passion for gardening, cultivated magnificent gardens in the 18th century, transforming the region into a paradise of abundance and a center of botany. These favorable conditions elevated the quality of beverages in Nemyriv and offered a variety of flavors that captured the imagination. 

In keeping with this tradition, our vodka is carefully crafted with natural ingredients such as honey from local beehives, herbs, fruits, and berries from local farms. By selecting the best ingredients, we create flavors that dance on the palate. 

You are now a global brand; does your origin help you expand into other markets? 

Nemiroff is known and has a proven reputation for high quality, authentic taste, and a bold brand image. We are truly proud to promote the indomitable Ukrainian spirit worldwide and thank all our partners and consumers for their support in the past year. 

We certainly observe increased interest in our brand and Ukrainian products in general in various markets and international exhibitions. However, partners and consumers remain attentive and selective in their choices. Our goal is to build long-lasting and strong relationships, and we believe these can’t be built solely on origin. 

Our indomitable spirit propelled us to expand to new markets last year. We entered the Bahamas, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and North Macedonia. We are also delighted to introduce our premium Nemiroff products to Czech consumers. 

Do preferences differ across different markets? What do Czech consumers favor from your portfolio? 

In most cases, there are differences among regions. The south generally prefers flavored products, Central Europe has taken a liking to Nemiroff De Luxe Honey Pepper, and as we move north, Nemiroff De Luxe is a major leader. Americans say Nemiroff De Luxe is a kind of white whiskey. 

Currently, we can observe various trends that cycle through different periods worldwide. This also applies to consumption culture – some markets prefer straight shots, while others favor drinks on the rocks, and some are open to mixology experiments. 

Today is definitely the golden era for our Nemiroff The Inked Collection with flavors, thanks to its depth, naturalness, and perfect quality. 

What is currently the flagship of your production? 

Nemiroff De Luxe is an exceptional, captivating beverage known worldwide. Its subtlety and complexity have become legendary. It’s a vodka with character, inspired by centuries-old vodka production tradition in Ukraine. It’s an example of strict, classic liquor. It’s made from premium wheat alcohol, pure water, a touch of honey, and a special ingredient that makes it unique – aromatic linden blossom. 

Linden is an iconic local tree, a part of our region’s authenticity. Our skilled craftsmen blend these ingredients using wood charcoal filtration, enriching the liquid with minerals and creating a unique, rich taste. 

Nemiroff De Luxe also undergoes eleven stages of filtration, with the final two being silver and platinum. The result is a clean, fresh aroma with hints of apples, lemon zest, and mint. On the palate, it’s smooth and full, with the right touch of spice and citrus notes, a hint of apples, and a long, dry finish with lemon zest and mint tones. Thanks to its flexibility, Nemiroff De Luxe is an excellent base for vodka in Martinis and all kinds of cocktails. 

What are the specifics of the production process and the technologies you use? 

People say vodka has a simple production process, but it’s a myth. Let’s start with different filtration methods. Filtration technologies in vodka production differ from those in other spirits. In our distillery, we use four types of filtration at different production stages. 

Mineral enrichment has a crucial role – ensuring Nemiroff is well-rounded. Birch wood charcoal is a traditional and authentic filtration method for vodka production. Silica sand is a readily available mineral with excellent absorption properties. Many different silica sand particles capture impurities, making our vodka clean and radiant. 

Our secret to success involves using platinum and silver for filtration. We use birch wood charcoal with silver or platinum ions. This method enhances the sensory properties and aroma of the product. 

This technology has been used for over 20 years, and product quality and safety have been tested in independent laboratories and confirmed with quality certificates. The interaction of silver and vodka sharpens the taste and even adds sweetness. 

It’s an almost invisible chemical process – the metals are carefully in contact with alcohol and don’t remain in the bottle in any form. This set of filters creates a unique taste. Silica sand and birch wood charcoal preserve the tradition of classic vodka, while silver and platinum dust complement the sensory properties. This special combination of minerals and precious metals guarantees the subtlety and smoothness of our products. 

What novelties can your customers look forward to? 

I don’t want to reveal too much, but it will certainly bring new flavor experiences! 

About Julia Terletska: Julia is a charismatic and friendly global ambassador for the Nemiroff brand and a bartender at the famous Parovoz Speakeasy bar, listed in the TOP500 bars. With eight years of experience behind the bar, including participation in major international events and bartending shows, she is also an acclaimed expert for the general public – providing training, lectures, master classes, and food pairing events. While enjoying the best Martini in her friendly bar, she delves into psychology, the Japanese tea ceremony, and poetry writing.