Imagine a world where you can make your way over to your choice lounge, select your  desired alcoholic beverage and experience the familiar sensation of the alcohol working it’s magic within seconds- without any calories. Yes, that wasn’t a typo! There is now a way to relish the effects of alcohol, without the added calories and impurities. Or even the usual head pounding hangover. Thanks to Julie Palmer (who introduced Vaportinis to the patrons at her Chicago bar in 2012), what otherwise would sound like a work of fiction is now bursting onto the scene and becoming more mainstream.

Vaportinis are being marketed as a revolutionary way of consuming alcohol- through inhalation. Meaning you can still taste the flavour of your chosen beverage (called spirits) however it is absorbed directly into the bloodstream. Bypassing the traditional absorption of alcohol through the stomach and intestines, followed by it metabolizing in the liver allows for an immediate effect. After the spirit is inhaled the effects are felt almost instantaneously, as opposed to  20-30 minutes when drinking the same alcoholic beverage. Recommended flavours for Vaportinis are vodka, bourbons, and dark rums.

How does this Vaportini work? Once you’ve selected your desired spirit, 1-1.5 ounces are funneled into the Vaportini Globe above a candle used to heat the alcohol. Wait for 5 minutes and like a Houdini illusion, a clear vapor will begin to cloud the device. Insert a straw and voila- your alcohol inhalation awaits.

Since this product is fairly new to the market there has been limited research on alcohol inhalation, beneficial or otherwise. Some concerns being that the lack of research also means lack of guidelines. For example, how much is too much?  Guidelines still need to be established in order for people to inhale responsibly. Some argue that by eliminating the body’s natural process of determining when too much alcohol is consumed, it can lead to an inability to comprehend when you’ve over-inhaled. With typical alcohol consumption, the body will naturally vomit to prevent alcohol poisoning. When inhaling Vaportinis, the body won’t have the same physical cues because the alcohol doesn’t pool in the stomach. On the contrary, supporters of the Vaportinis claim that individuals will consume less because the effects of one “puff” are felt within seconds.

The final verdict remains to be seen. In the meantime this product is selling like hotcakes (an estimated 100 000 units were sold in the very first week it was released) and it’s popularity appears to be on the rise. Although created in the States, Vaportinis have been successful in online sales to Canadians as well. I predict it’s debut in more Canadian lounges and bars in the very near future. Then we will have the luxury of evaluating first-hand whether this product is all smoke and mirrors or something that can only be described as a modern day miracle.

  • Amy

    This is crazy. I can’t believe shit like this actually exists. It’s like, what’s next? Bread without gluten? Oh wait…
    Either way, someone better bring this to the Toronto scene pronto so I can experience it, rather than just read about it. So cool.