cestrin

How To Proof Rum With Brown sugar Added

16 posts in this topic

How do you take into account sugar added to rum into the final proof? We barrel-finished our rum and are trying to get it to 80 proof and know that sugar will decrease the perceived proof of the rum.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I send my products to a lab for proof testing by distillation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Let me be more specific, we back sweeten with brown sugar after distillation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I understand. In order to get an accurate proof, it has to be distilled to measure the amount of alcohol in the product. If you do not have a lab grade distillation apparatus, you will need to send it to a lab like Enartis Vinquiry for analysis.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It all depends on how much sugar you add. As I read it there are three conditions, one ignore the sugar if it's low enough, less than 400mg/100ml, two If solids are between 400-600mg/100ml and proof is between 80-100 you have three choices per cfr30.32, three if over 600mg/100ml then you have to redistill. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you know the proof and weight (or volume) of the rum and the target sugar loading then you can calculate the quantities of sugar and dilution water required to achieve 80 proof using the calculator downloadable from www.katmarsoftware.com/alcodenslq.htm 

But the final proof must be verified as described by bluefish_dist

Edited by meerkat
make link clickable
1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, glisade said:

Part 3 here: https://www.ttb.gov/spirits/proofing.shtml

It's not that hard and you can buy a nice little glass lab still for a few hundred $.

 

Be careful of cheaper condensers on the glass lab stills.

I originally had a graham condenser, it has spiral path that when on an angle has liquid at the bottom of the spirals that prevents vapor escaping without condensing. It got broken and was replaced with a straight through Liebig condenser. I don't think this is condensing all the vapor as I am getting lower than expected readings.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah that's the problem with Graham condensers.  The typical glass fittings that come with distillation glassware don't allow them to be kept vertical.  Usually end up needing additional glass as well as an extra stand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think I explained myself properly. I don't like the straight through Liebig condensers especially if they are short. Some uncondensed vapor can get through without being condensed especially if heat turned up too much at start of boil. Whereas the Graham condenser with the spiral vapor path is much longer and also if it is at about an angle of 45 deg. some liquid forms at the bottom of the curves and prevents any loss of vapor.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone! We're going to order a lab still, we thought maybe there'd be some math we could do and realized the still IS how to do it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The lab still will allow you to determine the proof and sugar loading of your spirit, but if they are not on target then you still need the math to determine what to add to get to the correct levels.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually, one more follow-on question:

I just watched the video produced by the TTB for Distilling Spirits for Proofing - it varies significantly from the written procedure.  They say to rinse the collecting flask with 50ml extra water, but don't explain how this addition doesn't alter the proof of the spirits!  Anybody have an explanation for this, or suggestions for how to properly distill for proofing?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All you are trying to do when you re-distill your spirit is to separate the alcohol in the spirit from any solids. Your main goal is to distill ALL the ethanol from the spirit and leave only solids and water behind in the proofing still. Once you extract the ethanol then you add only pure water to your distillate to get back to your original volume that you distilled (before adding any extra water to rinse the flask). Then you can take the proof with hydrometers and that will tell you the proof of your original spirit. The extra water to rinse the flask will not change the amount of ethanol you will distill.

Example: Start with 500ml of your sweetened spirit. Assume all volume and proof readings are taken at 60F! Make sure all 500ml gets into the still and use XXml of rinse water if needed. Distill until you have collected all ethanol, (until still temp is at 212F). Stop distillation and add XXml of water to get the distillate volume back to 500ml exactly. Now you've effectively replaced the solids in the spirit with just water but it has the same ethanol content and volume as your original sample. Proof distillate with hydrometers.

The key is to make sure you get all the ethanol out so you must make sure all the spirit gets into the proofing still and you also don't lose any through evaporation while distilling or you'll be under proof. 

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

glisade,

Thank you for the explanation!  It all makes sense now...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now