Vodka has been around for a very long time. In fact as early as the 8th and 9th centuries, Russia and Poland were making alcohol that one could argue was vodka.
The first known recorded distillery was at Khylnovsk, as so reported the Vyatka Chronicle of 1174 (in Russia), but it wasn't until 1405 that vodka was named. The first written mention of vodka was in a Polish document from the Palatinate of Sandomierz called Akta Grodzkie. Poland and Russia both claimed vodka/wodka their national drink, and so the journey of the world's most popular spirit began.