IngeniOZ Vodka now on local retail shelves
A pair of Clear Lake businessmen have teamed with an Iowa State University professor to produce and market a new brand of vodka.
Jerry Krause, Bill Astor and Dr. Johannes Van Leeuwen, an eclectic researcher, engineer and professor, formed OZ Spirits as a start-up company in 2012.
Now, Ingenioz Vodka is on local shelves, with wider distribution anticipated.
OZ Spirits LLC was initiated by Van Leeuwen researching the impurities in various alcoholic beverages. Finding that vodka could easily be defined by the impurities in multiple lines of vodkas led to a process to “ozinate” the alcohol used for production. The ozination process purifies products.
Van Leeuwen’s testing of favorite vodkas on retail shelves showed many were high in impurities. The fewest impurities identified was eight; the highest number found was 49. Ingenioz Vodka is fermented from the finest corn grown and distilled six times. The alcohol is then infused with ozone, nature’s strongest oxidant, to destroy the impurities that can cause hangovers. Impurities are then filtered out with activated carbon and nanolayers of gold and other noble metals.
The result was superior vodka, says Astor. The most sensitive analytical techniques established Ingenioz Vodka as by far the purest on the market. It has zero impurities.
“Dr. Van Leeuwen was named innovator of the year in 2009 by Research and Development magazine. He spent many years developing the ‘Ingenioz’ process to create distilled spirits of incomparable quality and smoothness,” explained Astor.
The professor’s recipe for exceptional vodka is being complemented by the talents of Krause and Astor.
Krause has over 25 years experience in the restaurant and hospitality industry, while Astor has more than 25 years in the marketing of wine and spirits.
Astor said he has been in contact with Johnson Bros. Distributors. Johnson Bros. has sales people in 13 of the most populous states.
“At this time our intent is to distribute in Iowa and secondly to use Johnson Bros. for Minnesota and Illinois,” said Astor.
Ozination equipment has been transported to Cumming, Iowa and an agreement has been made with Iowa Distillers, a distillery marketing rum and blended whiskey in Iowa.
Statistics show there were over 66,000 cases of vodka sold in the State of Iowa in 2011. This is approximately $9 million in vodka sales alone. Nationwide, over $163 billion of vodka is sold annually.
“There is definitely room for a high quality vodka that shows the refined vodka connoisseur a new product that reduces the aftertaste, odor and hangover potential,” said Astor.