The Untold Truth Of Deep Eddy Vodka

Founded in Austin in 2010 by Clayton Christopher, Gary Crowell, and Chad Auler, Deep Eddy Vodka has cemented itself as a crowd-pleasing favorite, the kind of brand that feels like it's been around for much longer than a decade. Part of that is probably because Deep Eddy sits somewhere between humble craft purveyor and nationally available go-to. Its vibe is all about sun-dappled afternoons outside with friends, while its process is all about high-quality ingredients and great attention to detail, both of which are evident in Deep Eddy's delicious, corn-based vodka

However, this particular booze isn't the hand-distilled pet project of three unassuming buddies. In 2016, the trio of founders sold Deep Eddy for $400 million to Heaven Hill Distillery, which counts bourbon giants like Evan Williams and Elijah Craig in its portfolio. Clayton Christopher has founded other beverage brands as well, having founded Sweet Leaf Tea Co. and working with beverage titans like Coca-Cola, while Gary Crowell has continued to work in spirits, including launching Goodnight Loving Vodka.

That kind of big business hasn't mitigated Deep Eddy's easy-living nature nor the craft feel of its popular vodka, though, all of which is embodied by the brand's presence everywhere from your local watering hole to your friend's barbecue, along with their penchant for sponsoring outdoor concerts and music festivals (237 to date, according to the official website). Considering the epic rise of Deep Eddy, which was hailed as the fastest growing spirits brand in the United States in 2016 (as noted in a press release) by producing more than 5 million cases per year, we rounded up a few things you may not yet know about this tasty spirit and its producers.

The brand is named after a swimming pool

"Deep Eddy Vodka is inspired by the oldest swimming hole in Austin, Texas — a place where people come together to enjoy good times that never seem to end. Where strangers are just friends you haven't met yet."

That lovely imagery sets the scene for Deep Eddy's story, shared on the brand's website, and immediately captures that laid-back Saturday feeling of this small batch vodka and their purpose to "bring people together for good times." The man-made swimming hole in Austin that the company is named for is located about a half hour's drive from Deep Eddy's headquarters and tasting room in Dripping Springs, TX. 

The historic pool was built in the height of the Depression in 1915 by the Works Progress Administration. To do so, it meant enclosing natural cold springs from the Colorado River that people had already been enjoying and adding a bathhouse, cabins, and other structures to turn the area into a full-blown resort. Unfortunately, in 1935, a flood destroyed everything, but the pool and land was renovated again by the WPA and is still a favorite destination among Texans and tourists today, according to Friends of Deep Eddy.

The filtering process is key to Deep Eddy Vodka

If you ever filter your tap water in order to remove any impurities and achieve clean, better-tasting H20, you might find it interesting that Deep Eddy applies the same principles to its vodka. Many of these filters use charcoal, which has porous properties that remove microscopic impurities that could otherwise affect texture and taste. According to VinePair, Deep Eddy runs their spirit through a similar charcoal filtering process four times for the most pristine, quality liquor. 

This particular vodka is also column distilled 10 times, which applies a steam process in large towers to remove undesired agents from the mix, according to another VinePair article. The result is a super smooth and clean liquor with pure taste and mouthfeel and a higher ABV of 70-80%.

But that's not the only thing that makes Deep Eddy Vodka unique. It's also mainly made from corn, sourced from Indiana farms, and the brand prides itself on using only natural ingredients. As well, it's made in small batches for extra care and all of the processes are done locally at a large Texas distillery.

Deep Eddy's vodka comes in unique flavors

Deep Eddy's Original Vodka is a great introduction, since it makes it so easy to taste the brand's commitment to quality. Working your way through the rest of flavor line, however, is a fun exploration of drinkable creativity, one that guarantees anyone can find their favorite variety. According to VinePair, Deep Eddy actually launched in 2010 with its signature Sweet Tea flavor, and not the original bottle, as one might expect. The Sweet Tea pick is infused with Indonesian black tea, and gives a nod to both the brand's Southern roots and co-founder Clayton Christopher's other beverage venture, Sweet Leaf Tea Co.

On Deep Eddy's website, you can explore the rest of the flavor line-up that also includes Lime, Orange, Cranberry, Lemon, Peach, and Ruby Red (grapefruit). Lest you think the variety stops there, the brand also has a whole webage devoted to cocktail recipes, with all of its flavored vodkas adding fresh twists to any home bartender's standard repertoire.

You can visit Deep Eddy if you're in Texas

Many of the major vodka brands with the kind of presence that Deep Eddy has don't always have tasting rooms, which can feel more characteristic of smaller, more craft operations. You can't pop down to your neighborhood Smirnoff location, for example. True to its ethos of maintaining an artisanal spirit even as it grows — and of encouraging good times with friends — Deep Eddy welcomes visitors to its location in Dripping Springs, Texas where you can get an insider look at the distillery and head over to the tasting room for a specialty cocktail or tasting flight.

Currently there is a set of restrictions in order to keep everyone safe during the pandemic, but Deep Eddy is also known to throw a good party, and has a special "Sunday Funday" that aims to return when it's safe to gather in large groups again. You can even channel Deep Eddy's vibes for your own private event, and host anything from a work party to a wedding on-site.

Experiences in general are almost as big a part of Deep Eddy as the brand's vodka itself. According to its website, Deep Eddy has sponsored 237 festivals and counting and the brand is behind a number of tours alongside sponsoring up-and-coming music acts. As VinePair further notes, the company also utilizes three 1940s-era Spartan trailers that head cross-country to spread the word about the brand every year.

The company is active with charities and social causes

Delicious vodka in a variety of flavors isn't the only result of Deep Eddy's work. The brand is actively engaged and invested in different charities and important causes.

During the pandemic, Deep Eddy's marketing team created 21,000 care packages, including PPE essentials, and distributed them to more than 1,000 bars and restaurants across the United States (via Deep Eddy's website). The brand has also donated 36,000 bandanas to be used to make masks for frontline workers and the public, and made hand sanitizer with its distilling setup to help combat the spread of the COVID-19 virus. During this time, Deep Eddy also held free livestream concerts to give people a little boost of cheer during the quarantine.

As well, the company has created a limited-edition American flag–printed bottle to honor past and present members of the Armed Forces, donating proceeds from the sales of these collector's items to Folds of Honor, which provides scholarships to the families of fallen soldiers. Vodka from a producer that gives back arguably tastes even better.