Alcohol content, serving temperature and food pairings make vodka-based cocktail parties a bit different than wine mixers. If you're serving a thoughtfully prepared dinner, leave vodka for the after party and serve wine. Alternatively, if you're serving small bites of food throughout the evening -- especially spicy creations -- vodka works best. You should freeze vodka overnight before serving it. Freezing thickens vodka so it lingers on the palate long enough for you to enjoy its subtle sweetness and elusive creaminess.
Types of Vodka
Vodka has more versatility than wine; you can create a plethora of flavor combinations using it as the base liquor in mixed drinks. But it isn't something you usually serve with dinner -- that's wine's turf. Serve a combination of mixed drinks made with regular, inexpensive vodka throughout the evening and have three or four different bottles of quality vodka chilled for the connoisseurs.
Food and Vodka
If you have a night of appetizers planned, go with vodka and don't be afraid to turn up the heat. Vodka clears the palate of capsicum -- the chemical responsible for heat in foods such as peppers -- more effectively than other drinks. If you like to tempt fate, indulge in spicy foods you normally wouldn't and drink a small shot of vodka if it gets too intense.
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