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  1. Yesterday
  2. Hopped Whiskey(?)

    On a spirit label the TTB spirit "type" must be declared. However, a fanciful name or descriptor (if approved) is allowed if not on the same line as the spirit "type." Sometimes incorrect labels are approved. Sometimes unapproved labels are used.
  3. Distributors marketing contribution$$

    We have what we call LMFs set up where the distributor and I both put a buck a case into a local fund for use in that market. This is money to help cover cost of tastings, special menu printings, specialty POS items, events and promotions, cosponsored marketing material, help offset cost of holiday VAPs etc. We monitor the balance of the account with the distributor and we both have to agree for any money to be used.
  4. Early Sales, Consistent Sales

    What type of programming are you doing w your dist?
  5. Less is always more in print. Concision is key, attention span has diminished beyond existence in most consumers. Just be wary of inventory, I have seen hundreds of thousands of dollars in POS rotting away in distributor sales warehouses that never actually gets picked up or utilized by reps (until the day you come in for a work with) No one will sell your brand if you don't. You can provide the best marketing materials and see no results if you aren't in the market working with reps yourself. Be your own disciple. The key to distribution is multiplying yourself.
  6. Vendome

    I have one, works well. make sure you have a beer well or a way to agitate you mash well before pumping it through the still. Day to day operation in line with what you expected? yes for the most part · Cleaning the equipment, efficient clean in place. No CIP system per say just flush with steam and water caustic eats your copper. · Service and support after the sale. fair, could use improvement Rob knows his stuff though. · Setup challenges. height and size can be a problem get a foot print drawing and blue print before building something to house the still. · Happy with the distillate did you have to make any changes to your recipe. only still I have ran produces nice stuff. · Estimated operation costs per day? steam and cooling is the main cost really depends on your local gas and electrical cost. · Have you experienced unplanned downtime due to equipment failure. No · What does standard maintenance cost in time and dollars. we take about a day per month to inspect and clean. · Does the automation provide adequate control with the ability to expand monitoring and controls. I have ABB controllers not the big touch screen it works but you have to baby sit it it defiantly is not a set it and forget it. you can email me critt77matt@yahoo.com https:m.facebook.com/cdwhiskey/
  7. Continuous Still Video by Red Boot

    Hawkeye here! That is some sweet hardware amigo. I'm in WI I'll have to drop down with my COO sometime and check you guys out.
  8. slot floor drains

    We're thinking of installing a 15 foot section in Jan. to see if we want to convert for our expansion, I'll keep you guys updated on how it goes. I'm sick of power washing trenches, bring on the CIP!
  9. Hopped Whiskey(?)

    There are products in the marketplace that claim both to be distilled from hopped beer and to be American Whisky. The purpose of this post is to discover if there is some path forward to make similar claims. If, as it appears, there is no away to call spirits distilled from hopped beer "whiskey" then either those already in the marketplace are making false claims regarding the use of hopped beer in the approved formula or they are not in compliance (or the TTB screwed up and approved the COLA in error). Am I missing something?
  10. Warehousing, aging spirits

    Falling Rock - that is what I mean by "be generous."
  11. Final proofing documentation for TTB

    Whoa - I misread this the first time. I bet you mean the proof and fill check you make at the time of bottling. I'll talk about that here. I wish I could do it in a few short words. I can't. The law says TTB must make regulations that make sure consumers are not misled as to the quantity of the product in the bottle. For spirits, the quantity is the volume, but it is also the proof. So TTB requires that you tell consumer how much and how strong. Because TTB is not making tests to determine if you are doing that, they require that you keep records to prove that you are. It sounds good in theory. It sounds professional. But it is not. Your records will not provide assurance of compliance. Let’s look at why I say that. The regulations provide for a record of the proof and the fill of bottles. You find the record requirement in 19.600, which is headed "Alcohol content and fill test record." It requires specific information, but you will not find a "form" that TTB offers as appropriate for your use. In the broad sense, the records you keep of the tests you perform for each bottling are supposed to allow a TTB official to determine that you are complying with Sec. 19.356. Sec. 19.356 requires that, during bottling, you take adequate samples of bottled spirits, at representative intervals, to "ensure" that products are within the tolerances established by that section. I add the emphasis to point out TTB doesn't tell you how to do what they require. The regulations do not discuss how many samples you must take and at what intervals you must take them in order to "ensure" compliance. They place the onus on you. Why doesn’t TTB give sample sizes and frequency? It doesn’t do that because it is impossible for you to do what they ask. Sampling is not an easy subject and I am not an expert. I know just enough to recognize hogwash. It is hogwash to expect any small distiller to have a sampling program that “ensures” compliance. It also is hogwash to expect any small distiller to have a sampling program that will allow statistically valid projections of compliance at any reasonable confidence level. If pressed about sample parameters, the TTB officer who is auditing your records would probably dance to the side with a comment, every case is different, so we can’t specify sample size. Well, sure, every case is different, but the rules for statistical sampling, i.e., for sampling from which the TTB officer can draw the conclusion required by 19.356, that the sampling program ensures compliance, don’t change. And that leads to problems. The basic rules of statistical sampling do not allow for a sampling program that will ensure compliance. Talk of ensuring is prattle. Since TTB cannot possibly create a sample standard that ensures, it punts. TTB says it is up to you to devise the program. Going a little deeper. If we want to draw a conclusion from a sample, we must know the sample size needed to establish, within an acceptable degree of accuracy, that the bottles are consistently within the tolerance established by 19.356. Assuming you select the sample in a valid way, given the sample size, the frequency of the sample, the expected error rate, and the universe from which it is obtained, you will have a level of assurance, say 95%, that between 96% and 98% are within the tolerances allowed. Note that it is a qualitative finding. It says nothing about how much things vary. An error of 5% counts just as much as an error of 50%. All errors are created equal in frequency sampling. Which is fine, as far as theory goes. But when the universe is small, i.e., the size of a bottling run by a small distiller, no sample size will provide results that will allow a conclusion of the sort, we are 95% sure that the between 96% and 98% of the bottles were within tolerance. Even if TTB were to have a standard that said, you must take sufficient samples to establish, with a 95% confidence level, that between 96% and 98% of the bottles were in tolerance, TTB would have to determine how taking stratified samples, instead of random samples, affect the assurance of compliance, what rate of error is expected, etc., i.e. how to deal with all the variables that bedevil students in college statistics classes, let alone a small distiller left adrift by broadly stated requirements for which TTB provides no further guidance. Worse yet, in a small business, audit standards provide that an auditor looking at compliance must assume that the internal controls are inadequate to ensure. And proof and fill tests are "internal controls." Because the auditor cannot place any reliance on internal controls (you could be inventing all the test data), the auditor would have to test every bottle to ensure compliance. But most of those bottles had best be gone from bond or your business is probably in deep trouble. My point? Sampling is not an easy subject and I am not an expert. I know just enough to recognize hogwash. It is hogwash to expect any small distiller to have a sampling program that ensures compliance. So, what would I recommend, recognizing that I am not TTB, but that TTB has chosen to punt? The practical answer is, provide the TTB officer with information that satisfies the TTB officer, who, like you, is without an objective standard for how many and how often to test. I know, that is a statement of the obvious, but it is all we are left with. My best advice, in practice, is ask yourself, based on your sampling, if you are reasonably sure that you are within tolerance. If you are reasonably sure and the TTB officer is a reasonable person, your program will pass the test. That is the best guide I can offer. I'd be interested in hearing comments from any statisticians and/or auditors on my comments.
  12. Hopped Whiskey(?)

    As stated above hops are not a grain and therefor the product does not fall in the category of whiskey but " Distilled Spirits Specialty." If hops are added to whiskey after aging it would be called "Hop Flavored Whiskey."
  13. Finished Product Storage and Exemption

    Both the FD and regional building are on board with retail packed product not counting toward the maq. We did have a few distilleries that were taking the barrel exemption too far and the FD and RBD cracked down on that. Since we have quite a few distilleries in town the FD is aware of the regulations and how they apply. In fact they are updating them to try and make it more clear what is required. If you need a pe to help out I would look to Scott Moore at Dalkita. He specializes in distilleries and knows the codes very well.
  14. Finished Product Storage and Exemption

    I don't do open fermentation because fruit flies are a complete pain, but many, many distilleries do it and it is almost "the standard", and just like in every other part of the food industry there will be the occasional insect that makes it's way in there. However, that insect and the dust will not make it through distillation, and your final product coming off the parrot is basically sterilized (which is better than sanitized) by heat and alcohol. Once distilled I would keep your spirits in closed top containers because at that point you're dealing with concentrated alcohol and it's now your final product and susceptible to contamination. It sounds like you just need to sit down with your locals and simply educate them on the industry and alleviate their fears. I mean heck, a sour mash whiskey is exactly that. Mash that has "spoiled" and has become infected with bacteria. Sour mash whiskey is not any more harmful than regular whiskey due to the process of distillation. As for the barrel exception. I didn't dig through them, but you should find something here: https://www.google.com/search?q=distillery+barrel+exemption+fire+site:adiforums.com&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi8rZ7t-MXXAhXn34MKHXqgDEIQrQIINygEMAA&biw=1600&bih=791
  15. Finished Product Storage and Exemption

    How I would be able to keep bugs or dust from getting into them.
  16. Finished Product Storage and Exemption

    I'm curious, what were their concerns about the open fermentation?
  17. 500 Gallon Cypress Fermentation Tank

    are the fermenters still available
  18. Warehousing, aging spirits

    I doubled the amount my listed tanks could possible hold and figured if it didn't go through they would disallow it. I had 1,200 gallons of listed tanks, I answered 2,400 gallons and they approved it.
  19. Finished Product Storage and Exemption

    My fire marshal is fine, it's the building inspections office that is raising all the concerns. It also blew their minds that I'm going to do open fermentation. Also Skaalvenn for got to respond to your last comment. It's my building inspections office saying M occupancy, when my architect did his write up and sent it to them, he referenced me as F-1.
  20. Finished Product Storage and Exemption

    Our fire marshall is okay with anything in consumer packaging and not counting it towards our total allowed. Please understand that means nothing. Your AHJ gets to determine the meaning of the specifications and his comfort level.
  21. Finished Product Storage and Exemption

    Skaalvenn, I've searched every key term I can think and came up bust on the forums. Thatch/bluefish, I know of that exemption (IBC table 307.1(1), but it reads that it is for retail and wholesale sales occupancies. Were you able to get your AHJ to buy into letting you use that exemption?
  22. Last week
  23. Final proofing documentation for TTB

    The regulations (19.618 for other than packages and 19.619 for packages) require a gauge record for any of the required gauges specified. You can see the information that record must contain. Did you know, for example, that it is suppose to contain the proof of distillation? Well, it is. However, the gauge record section does not answer how you record, for posterity, the elements of the gauge. Obviously, the elements of the gauge are different if you determine the wine gallons by weight or by volume. By volume, you have two corrections: one for the built in error of the certified thermometer - for which you have a correction table, of course - and one to correct to the volume at 60 degrees H. For hydrometer readings, assuming you do not have one of the expensive density meters that TTB accepts, you need the correction for the variance from apparent proof that is intrinsic to the instrument, and for the correction to 60 degrees F. If you know how to use the tables in the gauging manual, it is easy to prepare a temple in Excel with formulas that allow you to enter the apparent readings and table values and convert the apparent readings to actual readings. Some people sell apps for doing that, but I've not checked them out. TTB provides a handy proofing worksheet with the package it sends when it approves an application to establish a DSP. It doesn't come with instructions, but it shows what they would like to see: Append one of those to each serially numbered gauge record, or to other records, hen no gauge record is required under 19.618 or 19.619, and you will have done everything TTB might require in its wildest dreams of compliance.
  24. Warehousing, aging spirits

    Ask TTB. I'm serious. They won't be able to tell you. Yes, it is information required by the regulations, but how did that come to be? I don't know. I'll guess. If you are going to establish a DSP FOR STORAGE ONLY, i.e., no production or processing, if it has a capacity to store less than 250K wine gallons, you have to ask TTB's permission. That is the only provision that I find relevant to the wine gallon capacity and I know my way around part 19. So ... make what I would call a SWAG - a scientific wild ass guess. And be generous. TTB doesn't want you to have to amend an application over such matters any more than you want to have to do so.
  25. eNewsletter from ADI

    In this week’s eNews: Crowds stepping up and backing craft distilleries; "Buy local" now applies to your booze; Bottled-in-Bond: How a 120-year-old liquor act is helping craft whiskey make a statement; Salida, CO votes for craft distiller as new mayor; new releases, events, workshops and more! http://conta.cc/2zZTOm8
  26. Vendome

    I don't want to trash any supplier I haven't actually purchased from publicly- but check your DMS!
  27. While testing our still we boiled some water from the water softener. Now there are black stains on the inside of the still. This did not happen earlier when using hard water. Has anyone else experienced this and any tips on how to clean this off ?
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