Photo of
September 2, 2013
[Black Cow Vodka is made in West Dorset][1]
Black Cow Vodka is made in West Dorset

Some readers may recall the Knorr stock cube ads which involved a hapless bloke marvelling at the mysteries of his wife’s soup.

The dim-witted husband was perplexed as to how his wife could create pea and ham soup from a chicken.

The much quoted payoff line was ‘Pea and ham… from a chicken? Now that’s clever.’

The 5pm Dining blog had similar thoughts when news reached us of Black Cow Vodka which is made entirely from the milk of grass-fed cows.

Never mind pea and ham. Vodka from a cow – that really is clever.

Black Cow is made by West Dorset farmer Jason Barber. Like many a dairy farmer, Jason was fed up being paid a pittance for the milk which his herd produced.

Award-winning cheese

He had already diversified into cheese making. In fact, his Barber’s 1833 Cheddar won the World Cheese Awards Cheddar Trophy last year.

Casting about for other products to make, Jason stumbled across the Tuva, a nomadic Siberian people who, for centuries, have been distilling spirit from fermented mares’ milk.

Figuring that if the Tuva could do it in Siberia, he could do it in West Dorset, Jason set about creating Black Cow Vodka.

The milk from Jason’s cows is separated into curds and whey. The curds are used to make cheese while the whey is fermented into a base beer which is then distilled, blended, triple filtered and hand bottled.


The result is, perhaps surprisingly, absolutely delightful.

Initially, vodka made from milk might sound quite off-putting but the finished product is creamy and smooth but also light. Yes, it does have a slight milky finish but it’s like the aftertaste of, say, a pannacotta dessert rather drinking a glass of milk.

I’m thinking it would be absolutely brilliant in an espresso martini.

So there you have it. Vodka from a cow. Surprisingly good. You can buy it from here.

[Jason Barber and his vodka-producing herd][5]
Jason Barber and his vodka-producing herd