Absolut Vodka

Absolut Vodka logo
Absolut Vodka logo
by Carlsson & Broman
Original name: "Tiodubbelt Renadt Brännvin" (1877)

Name: "Absolut Rent Brännvin" (1879)

International name: "Absolut Vodka" (1979)

Category: Liquors

Subcategory: Vodka

Inventor: Lars Olsson Smith

Producer: V&S Vin & Sprit AB

Production start: 1879 - Åhus, Sweden

Lars Olsson Smith
Lars Olsson Smith
Kiaby, Oct. 12, 1836
Karlskrona, Dec. 9, 1913,
spirits manufacturer and
inventor of Absolut Vodka
Recipe: The ingredients for the production of Absolut Vodka are grain (winter wheat), sweetening enzymes (in the mashing process), yeast and water. It does not contain any gluten as it is removed in the production process. Proof: 80 - 100.

Interesting facts: Absolut Vodka was introduced in Sweden in 1879 as "Absolut rent bränvin" - "Absolutely pure vodka". Lars Olsson Smith, famous entrepreneur and father of Absolut Vodka, applied a new method of distillation using rectification. In 1917, the alcohol industry in Sweden was monopolized by the Swedish government. Vodka was then sold nationwide under the name "Absolut Rent Brännvin". The name changed with intervals, "Renat Brännvin" or "Absolut Rent Brännvin". In 1979, the old name Absolut was picked up when Absolut Vodka was introduced in the United States through Carillon Importers Ltd. in New York. A few final changes were made to the bottle - the now famous medallion of Lars Olsson Smith was added and the neck was made a little longer. The first consignment of Absolut Vodka was filled at the Åhus distillery on April 17, 1979 and Absolut Vodka went on sale for the first time in the US in Boston two months later. In a short time, Absolut Vodka has gone from a Swedish domestic vodka to one of the world's 10 leading spirits brands.

Slogan: «Country of Sweden» was added between "Absolut" and "Vodka" to stress the vodka's origin and its tradition of purity.

Property: V&S Vin & Sprit AB

Product website: http://www.absolut.com

Renat Bordsbrännvin 1917
Renat Bordsbrännvin (1917), an early version of Absolut Vodka

Absolut Rent Brännvin 1917
Absolut Rent Brännvin (1917), some early versions of Absolut Vodka

Absolut Vodka bottle design project 1978
A sketch of the iconic Absolut Vodka bottle (1978), based on a vintage apothecary bottle

Absolut Vodka first bottle 1979
Absolut Vodka (1979), the first bottle produced

Absolut Vodka first bottle 1980
Absolut Vodka (1980), the first bottle in its distinctive design

Absolut Vodka medallion
Medallion on the top of the bottle bearing the portrait of its inventor Lars Olsson Smith. Over the years it has been designed in different versions and printed on different materials.
Absolut Vodka medallions

Absolut Vodka first advertising
The first Absolut Vodka campaign (1980 by Geoff Hays of the TBWA ad agency in New York). 94 advertising agencies pitched for the opportunity to design an advertising campaign for Absolut, and this was the winning concept. Through the years, this simple, but sophisticated Absolut ads - a picture of the bottle accompanied by a witty caption (some examples at bottom) - have captured the imagination of the general public.
Absolut Vodka ads

Absolut Warhol advertising 1986
Absolute Vodka advertising (1986 by the famous artist Andy Warhol)

Absolut Vodka in 2013
Absolut Vodka in some of its advanced versions and flavors (2023)