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Everything posted by Odin

  1. Okay, the show is in Dutch, and half of it is about a special villa, but the rest is about award winning master distiller Bart Joosten, making his single malt whisky and gin: http://www.uitzendinggemist.net/aflevering/389727/Binnenstebuiten.html Regards, Odin.
  2. Today I visited Schouten Distillery again. Their gin is ready and tastes awesome. And their distillery looks great! https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/04/21/schouten-distillery-2/?preview_id=9219&preview_nonce=bf4c6fc12c Regards, Odin.
  3. We are shipping out four more iStills 500 NextGen. All units have full distillation capabilities (1 to 40 redistillations), and can mash and be used as additional fermenters as well. Regards, Odin.
  4. And a happy easter to all of you! https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/04/16/happy-easter/ Regards, Odin.
  5. Short article we did on column design: https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/04/14/bigger-is-better-1/ Regards, Odin.
  6. We are organizing a new training. Early May in Utah. 3-day course that scores 9.8 out ot 10 and may well be the best distillers workshop available. For more info, please see: https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/04/04/istill-training-in-utah/ Regards, Odin.
  7. iStill Movie! Quality, production strategy and ... sh*tloads of innovations to share! Regards, Odin.
  8. Bart, congrats on your new iStill 100 NextGen! Regards, Odin.
  9. Congrats to Listoke Distillery on their distribution success! Now available on 12 duty free stores at airports around the world ... and coming to Manhattan just after summer. https://www.facebook.com/odiniStill/notifications/?section=activity_feed&subsection=share&ref=notif&target_story=S%3A_I692746780%3A10154258360526781&content_id=1570209363020046 Regards, Odin.
  10. Introduction Over the last decade I have had the opportunity to help dozens and dozens of craft distillers with developing and designing their gins. I want to use this thread to help lay out some of the basic guidelines I learned, that make the production of great gin quite easy and straight forward. Over the coming days (and depending on comments and my time in the factory) or weeks, I want to get most of the information (if not all) that we give on our gin making courses across. Now, gin making has a wide set of variables. And a lot of people adhere to certain approaches. If ever you feel my approaches or opinions to be contrary to yours, let's turn this thread into a discussion, not a battle ground. I for one will not. Just sharing info, not trying to convince anyone. Use the info or not. It's here (or it will be) and I will share it so you can use it. A few things on gin. Basically, let's dive into procedures, herbs bills, distillation techniques. But I want to start with a general outline on taste. Just to make or introduce a starting point. When I make whiskey, I find the late heads, smearing into hearts, to be fruity. Front of mouth oriented. You taste them first and you taste them on your lips and the front of your tongue. The body, the grain, comes over after that. Hearts. Middle mouth feeling. Early tails, that smear into the last portion of hearts, have a nutty, root-like taste (if you give them time to develop) and are tasted at the back of your mouth towards the throat. Now, in my experience, the same holds true for a gin: it's the fruity bits that come over first, then the body, then the root-like, nutty flavors. So if you want to make a floral gin ... don't add root-like, nutty things to your gin recipe. And cut a bit earlier. If you want a full-bodied gin that lingers in your mouth and can be consumed neat ... do add those nutty, root-like components. And cut a bit later, since these tastes come over during the last part of the run. Okay, that was the introductionary post. More on herbs bills and aging gin and procedures in future posts! Regards, Odin.
  11. More info on our 'gator barrels! https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/03/15/alligators-in-da-house/ Regards, Odin.
  12. Old meets new and small meets big ... https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/03/13/old-meets-new-small-meets-big/ Regards, Odin.
  13. We are currently building a few more iStills 5000 NextGen. For the North-American market. 1300 gallon net capacity. Serves as a potstill, column still, masher and even a fermenter. Fully automated and robotized ... https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/03/09/buiding-more-istills-5000-nextgen/
  14. If you are interested in gin, you may enjoy this thread: As for gin making and using gns, a simple potstill is just awesome. Regards, Odin.
  15. Another iStill innovation: direct cooling. For more reading, please see: https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/03/07/direct-cooling/ Regards, Odin.
  16. No, that's not what I am talking about. Its the potential of ethanol blockage I don't like. Regards, Odin.
  17. Too high abv in a boiler is dangerous. And it can be the cause of the issues the OP is encountering. Not saying it is, but it may. 15 or 16 distillations should take you to 190 proof. What may happen, and i am not sure, but it can cause the issue of not reaching 190, is ethanol blockage. For a column to work well, it needs to be able to establish a temperature gradient. Higher at the bottom, lower at the top. If your still is charged with very high abv, it will create the lowest temperatures already low in the column, and this hampers the rising and further purification of the spirits. Since the boiler is still fed with power, a pressure situation can evolve where water i(or boiler contents) are pushed up the column, smearing into the more purified alcohol. To test it, dilute to 30% prior to doing the 15-plate run. I think Southernhighlander's advice may work well, even though with a good system you wouldn't need that. Personally, I feel Liquid Management instead of Cooling Management works better. In LM you don't have a dephlag that is influences by water temp, water pressure, surrounding temp and air pressure. Instead you have a column cooler that liquifies all gasses and you then select manually via a needle-valve what goes back for redistillation and what is taken out as product. The advantage of this Liquid Management column management system for vodka making is that it is only influenced by differences in air pressure (well, the boiling point of alcohol is), so there is more control. My experience with a lot of those that use packing in their column, is that it works nicely. Depending on what you use, it can give you like one distilation cycle per inch of column packing. Distillami, putting some scrubbers in won't do it. Look at something like our helicon column packing. BCouts, I think the sizing question really relates to how much product you want to make. How much vodka. I know Liquid Management columns that are packed and that produce 190 at rates of 15 to 20 liter per hour. That's on just a 5 inch column diameter and 30% boiler charges. Regards, Odin.
  18. Today rum & vodka distillers Rob and Craig came over from the UK to collect their new iStill 500 NexgGen! https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/03/04/hi-rob-and-craig/ Regards, Odin.
  19. Gin bumper sticker: https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/03/01/happy-birthday-odin/
  20. ... and thanks for the feedback, Franco. It was great meeting you and it is even better seeing you have enjoyed the workshop. We have new workshops planned for the weekend of March 12 and March 26. Both three day courses on mashing, fermenting and advanced distilling. Whiskey, vodka, rum and gin. The first one is already sold out, the second one still has a few places free. And, yes, during those days we will use an iStill 500 `NextGen to do the actual mashing, fermenting and distilling with! I am looking forward to it. Franco, do you remember tasting the Clotted Cream Gin from The Wrecking Coast Distillery? The one that won the title of Best Flavored Gin in the World? Well, their business is doing good, so they ordered another iStill 500 NextGen. Here's a picture of their unit being put up for crating. We don't just sell stills and related equipment, we want to be a key supplier that helps our customers achieve their business goals. That's also why the workshops and consultancy and product development we offer are so important. But I am sidetracking ... Next post on the makings of fine gin again! Regards, Odin.
  21. Here's some customer feedback on our stills/fermenters, etc. as well as our consultancy and support: https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/02/25/customer-feedback/ Regards, Odin.
  22. Building two iStills 5000 NextGen as we speak. Both are heading for the USA. Regards, Odin.
  23. If you want to see more about iStill in Scotland, please click on this link: https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/02/22/dornoch-distillery-2/ Regards, Odin.
  24. I am currently doing a tour of Scotland. The last few days I spend in Dundee, in the so-called Scottish lowlands, where we help set up the Verdant Spirits Company. I met with Andrew Mackenzie and we made some awesome gin together. Another medal winner, I predict! Here is a link with some pics: https://www.facebook.com/VerdantSpirits/ Today, I traveled north to visit Neil and Katie, who are starting up a vodka distillery (with rum and whisky to follow) in the Speyside region of Scotland. They ordered an iStill 500 NextGen to start their business up. And that unit will be joined by an iStill 2000 NextGen before the end of this year. From Neil and Katie's Blackford Craft Distillery, the voyage took me to beautiful Dornoch. Right, highland territory. What the guys were making, when I arrived? Single malt whisky, of course! Here's a short video: Tomorrow? Tomorrow The Dornoch Boys Simon and Philip will be making some awesome Dornoch Gin. And the day after? We plan to do a 1.5 distillation approach on the single malt they stripped today. I will keep you posted! Odin.
  25. Here's more on the smaller barrels we make: https://istillblog.wordpress.com/2017/02/20/making-30-liter-istill-barrels/ Regards, Odin.