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  1. 4 points
  2. 4 points
    The presentation I put together on continuous column distillation is focused on a comparison of the efficiency of batch distillation versus continuous distillation. The discussion on the science of single pass continuous distillation (finished spirits) including the separation of heads / hearts / tails is a much deeper discussion that my ppt only briefly touches on. The file is to big to upload here if any one would like to see it send me an email Distillerynow@gmail.com and Ill send you the presentation
  3. 3 points
    the midwest. if you're from New York, it starts just West of Philly until you get to Nevada. If you're from Texas, it ain't anywhere near Texas. Texas is Texas. If you're from California.. hey, man, like, whaat? If you're from Chicago, that's the midwest, but they aren't happy about who's in the rest of the midwest. If you're from the South and don't say "y'all" then that's not the South, it's the midwest.
  4. 3 points
    The issue about turning elements on sequentially over time is in reference to a demand meter. Depending on your service, once you hit your "maximum daily demand" which I believe is over a 15 minute period, you will thereafter be charged that "demand" every day for the rest of your operational life. However your cost per KW will be lower, billed on top of that flat demand charge. As for remote start up, perhaps you could run a feed back loop program to your iPad that is lying beside you in bed, that also activates a remote wire clipped to your nuts. Then when your still starts at the distillery you will simutaneosly gets zapped in the nuts to force you to get up to protect your investment. All of course at a lower cost per KWH.
  5. 2 points
    You have asked a question that I have thought about writing a book to answer. Having started a few small businesses in my life, this has proven to be the most complex. There are endless details and problems to solve, and there is a very small community available to help (although most in the community are very generous in giving advice, etc.). Investor capture work is worth a chapter of two. Start very early in your business plan process and you will spend a lot of time with little results... but those results are generally more valuable as initial capital is the hardest to come by. However, it will also be more costly capital as you will need to give away more ownership to attract the investor at that point (all you have are ideas on paper without any proof you can actually execute on a plan). There are three types of investors: 1 - those that know you and like you and want to help you. 2 - Those that want to play a role in the business. 3 - Those that will only invest based on anticipated probability of a certain level of ROI. #1 should be your first target early. One idea there is to come up with an offering but include a convertible shareholder note vehicle. Let's say Uncle Joe likes you and wants to help. He has a bit of savings he isn't afraid of losing, and more that he would invest if he has some security behind it. One idea is to have Uncle Joe buy-in with some, and then maybe does a convertible note for some of the equipment where he holds title to the equipment. The payments for the equipment can be deferred, but interests accumulates. At some date in the future the principle and interest would be payable to Joe, or he can chose to convert some or all of it to shares in the business. If the business is not doing well, then Joe can take his equipment and sell it to at least partially recover his losses. However if the business is doing well, it can secure a loan to pay off what Joe is owned, and use the equipment for collateral, or Joe can convert all or some of what he is owed into ownership shares. #2 is a partner. Be careful. It is like getting married without the benefit of sleeping together. #3 is the hard one. Be careful here too. Read about Balcones. Better to push this off into the future when you are open and have some proof of concept that you can pour and sell. Note that if you are not an attorney, and you will have investors, you will need to hire an attorney. I will not tell you how much I have spent on attorneys because it makes me cry. The sequencing of steps will look like a mess, and there are many irreconcilable conflicts that you just have to deal with. For example, my building official wanted county health department sign off before he issued the C of O and the county health department wanted the C of O before they would do any inspection. You just have to negotiate your way to some successful conclusion. You will need an address and floor-plan and list of equipment before you can get TTB approval and state approval. I know of one distillery where the owner leased a very small facility to store all his equipment and supplies he was going to use for his final address, and used that smaller address to get his TTB and state approval for his DSP, and then did some DSP-to-DSP transfers of spirit in barrels that aged in this small warehouse space while he worked on finding and building his final space. He submitted and was approved for the changes, and when he finally opened he had 4-year old whiskey to sell on day one. Very smart! That was not me. The very first thing you need is a fully fleshed out business plan. This is very important as it contains all the big picture thinking that answers a lot of the questions for what steps are needed and in what sequence. You need to put a number of hours into just sitting down and thinking and writing it down. You need to think about how big of an operation and how much you think you can sell, and capture all the money in and money out flows in projected financial reports. I have a 6-year cash flow spreadsheet backed by all the assumptions about costs of good sold and sales that updates everything when I make a change. That way I can play with the assumptions as I develop a better confidence and understanding in how the business will operate. Frankly, you should never talk to any investor without having done this first. I will open this next month. It has been over 4 years since I first sat down to start writing the plan, and three years since I started paying for things related to this business. I will have my first sales revenue in July 2019. My last bit of advice.... making beer is a lot easier and quicker.
  6. 2 points
    Totally don't understand. If you are clogging a straight-through HX, it means your pump can't build sufficient pressure to pump against the back pressure of the tubing. There are zero occlusions in a straight-through flow path to cause any kind of blockage, build up, or otherwise. So how on earth does a more restrictive setup result in less chance of clogging? Especially one that now includes obvious inclusions. You'd face significantly more head pressure with a 4 tube design, because it's more restrictive to flow. Your maximum solids size now becomes the inner diameter of the smaller tube. If I bought a 4 tube design and one tube clogged, so that I needed to break it down to clean it, I'd ask for my money back, because that's garbage design.
  7. 1 point
    We sell a lot of cartridge filters in those sizes. The most popular ones we sell are Graver QMC from 0.6 to 10µ, and Graver GFC 1µ. Probably the next most common question I hear after "how long do filters last before they clog?" is "what size do I use to filter out particles without removing flavor?". For spirits it would be pretty challenging to remove flavor using normal dead-end filtration like the cartridges linked above. The things that add flavor to your spirit are almost certainly entirely dissolved in solution. That is to say, they are not particles that would be caught in a filter, but are liquids that will pass right through. Unless you are running your spirits through nanofiltration or ultrafiltration, you can rest assured that filters are just removing the large particles like bit of charcoal dust, bits of barrel char, etc., and not having any impact on flavor.
  8. 1 point
    The bottling line filter should not be final filtration. Final filtration should happen as part of processing. The bottling line filter is simply a last line of defense for any stray dust are particulate which may have found its way in the product in final transfers, tanks, etc I agree with Adam - bottling line filtration should probably last damn near forever.
  9. 1 point
    This is a great discussion, really provides excellent overview of pros/cons and underlying process of a vacuum distillation for spirit production! Kudos to @Silk City Distillers and @Southernhighlander for taking the time to do so...
  10. 1 point
    check out the folks at High Proof Creative. They do fantastic original marketing work
  11. 1 point
    Ok I was just joking around, but that’s just crazy. I use alcohol sometimes when cooking chicken, but not the other way around. I need to try this.
  12. 1 point
  13. 1 point
    Actually, I did report this to the FBI, as should everyone else who was ripped off, so they take it seriously coming from multiple companies. From what I keep being told is that the chances of anyone getting their money back (even with a win in the court), is likely never going to happen. So the way I see it, if the FBI does their investigation and sees the total fraud that was purposely done, maybe at least these Corson brothers will pay a price in another way. They stole a lot of money from us, so I don't feel sad for them one bit.
  14. 1 point
    We have a pair of 2" Viking Duralobe positive displacement pumps. Pretty much all of the stainless PD lobe pumps work in the same way, even if the lobe styles/shapes are different.
  15. 1 point
    If you are interested in tube in shell, check for used dairy equipment. I see them on auction sites often.
  16. 1 point
  17. 1 point
    Huffy: This is easy. Go into your PonL DSP record (not the entity record). Click on the record info tab to be the following menu: Click on tyhe supporting documents and attachment link. It brings you to a screen that shows all the documents that you submitted and that TTB has approved. Look for the following document (I omit the left hand columns). Click on the link it the column to the left of that. It will download the approved application. Save it, print it, and send it to the DSP from which you want to obtain spirits. Hope this helps.
  18. 1 point
    Yeah @Aux Arc answered for me. If you are just starting to get into a rhythm and don't have a regular production schedule, using backset/stillage in your mash is a little bit of a challenge, since you need to keep it around. The spent wash from the pot, after distillation - separated from the spent grain. You shouldn't need pH stabilizer, adjust using your acid of choice along with the backset. Question 3 - Anything malted goes in on the way down, at 150-152f. These grains will easily gel at those temperatures, and that temp range will preserve enzyme function. Glad to see you worked through the challenges, keep truckin.
  19. 1 point
    I’m well aware of there attempts to deceive other potential victims. As this is why I felt it was necessary to share my experience in hopes that others would not have to go through what we have gone through. This kind of thing destroys good peoples dreams. Btw they have found funding to advertise through google also. Wish they were spending my money on the equipment I payed for. 😕
  20. 1 point
    If you are talking about control areas, then chain link won't do it. You must have a fire resistant wall that would contain any fire to that room for a specific period of time. Is your goal to avoid an H-3 classification?
  21. 1 point
    Just so there is no confusion. Everyone is correct that you want your paddles pushing mash downwards and they are correct about everything they said concerning agitators in liquid washes however these particular agitators in the videos will not work well for what you are doing with corn. In fact they would be a nightmare for you. They are great for liquid washes but not for 2 lbs per gallon corn mashes for several obvious reasons.
  22. 1 point
    I do not know of a case for differentiation of the equipment as you have described. We are living in an age where localities and all governments in fact have gotten out of hand, and are getting more so as time goes on. What I might suggest is to get your entire steam and condensate piping schematic drawn up and have a Steam System Engineer sign off on it, and possibly ask your local troublemakers if they will accept this before hand. The other thing is we are also in an age where expertise on these type of systems is disappearing except in larger industrial applications where it still has to be present. This unforunately makes this kind of install double dangerous. As an example, I am likely the only one in this town that has any working knowedge or experience with running Steam Boilers. NONE of the HVACR or Local Plumbing Mechanical outfits are learned and they avoid dealing with it. The ones that are hacking on hydronic systems are dangerous. Spirax Sarco may have some resources for you if you make contact with them. Everything is stacked against the small operator across the board. Not just in this trade. Also if you get on some of the online Engineering Forums, you may be able to find an old school Engineer who can help you. If you are anywhere near Utah, you can visit our operation if you are interested in particulars. There is a wide variance of safety margins out in the real world. I have visited a larger scale running Distillery that was an Engineering nightmare. We attempted to make this small one as safe as possible.
  23. 1 point
    In the future I would use more premalt or add enzymes around 130 degrees before heating to 212. The gelled corn means starches weren’t converted into sugar. Learned this when I forgot to add enzymes as a premalt for a 100% corn whiskey and had to shovel out about 100 pounds of corn jelly from the bottom of a cooker.
  24. 1 point
    That's your first bottom plate that's flooding. The sight glass below that (first sight glass at the bottom of the column) does not have a plate behind it. Next time you do a run call us again and Mike will see if he can help balance the columns better so that the bottom plate in the 2nd column does not flood. However, as long as the flooding does not go higher it's not an issue that will keep you from running or maintaining the proof that you want.
  25. 1 point
    Jeff, Under a given set of conditions, there is an optimum cooking temperature and time to obtain the best quality of distillate and the best alcohol yield. I believe the question you have is about cooking small grains at high temperatures. There are a lot of ways to prepare grains for fermentation, but the simple goal of cooking is to gelatinize the starch granules, to make them available for hydrolysis by enzymes to convert to fermentable sugars but the complicated goal is to efficiently obtain proper gelatinization of starch, properly free up amino acids the yeast require, convert to fermentable sugars, reduce contamination and obtain a flavor extraction from the grains. The infusion mashing process we use, (simply cooking small grains at lower & proper temperatures), here at Wilderness Trail is designed around maximizing flavor first, energy second and time third. You do not have to boil your grains up to 210F and you certainly do not want to cook any of your small grains (wheat, rye, barley, malted barley, etc) in that range, again you can but it will not be the highest quality distillate you can obtain in the end if you do that. You can cook corn to 210F and it doesn't do much more than waste energy cooking it that high, part of the high heat is to sterilize the grains of bacteria and you take care of that around 190F and you only need to cook corn around 190F-185F for proper gelatinization, we cook our corn at 190F, it saves energy from going higher, we convert all of the available sugars and sterilize our grains, that is why you do it. For wheat the actual gelatinization range is 136F-146F but we start adding our wheat around 155-160F. For Rye the actual range is 135F-158F and we add and cook our Rye no higher than 160F for good reasons. Our Malted barley never goes in higher than 145F to preserve the enzymatic activity and to keep the grains intact. Think of it this way, gelatinization is like popping popcorn under water, its a dramatic change in the grains composition.. and throw in some smaller ductile grains like wheat or rye and you blow them apart under the same conditions as well as a lot of protein you don't want to break down. The reasons you do not cook grains beyond their proper gelatinization range is more about flavor than yield because if it is too rigorous, thermal decomposition of grain components will cause objectionable popcorn phenolic odors, yield is more impacted by poor grains, under cooking, poor conversion and yeast conditions. By using the infusion mashing process for small grains, you keep the branched chain amino acids and proteins in place with the grains that the yeast will use to properly make a flavorful result. If you boil your small grains, you are creating unbranched chain amino acids, degrading proteins and frankly blowing apart the flavor you are trying to extract. Small grains also get scorched very easy and there are Maillard effects that create all kinds of new chemicals from the high heat of small grains you don't want, plus why would you, the process doesn't require it. The yeast take these unbranched chain and Maillard effect's and turns them into higher alcohols (fusels) and other chemicals that alter the flavor and result of the beer & distillate. In short summary for our whiskeys, we cook our corn to 190F and hold that for 40 minutes, we cool to 160F by adding some water additions of the overall mashbill and add our wheat or Rye and hold that for 30 minutes, we add more water additions to get to 145F which is when we add our Malted Barley which rest for 30 minutes. We add the rest of our water additions for our ferm set and the chiller takes it down to 90F. We send that to our fermenters, which are set to hold at 85F for three day beer and 78F for 4-5 day beer. By shortening the initial cook of the total water, your initial cook is thicker, for us that is around 18 beer gallons and that allows you to use less energy to heat up the initial cook and reserve the rest of the water for cooling capacity as well as when you add your grains you are also using that to help cool your mash down. For example I mentioned we add our wheat at 160F but after the grains are added the temperature drops to around 150F+ and rest out to a little above 145F. We primarily make a wheated Bourbon but we also make a Rye Whiskey, which again even though the Rye will be the majority of grains, we still cook our smaller amount of Corn up to 190F and then cool it down to 160F before adding the majority of the mashbill of Rye. Infusion mashing is scientifically proven to offer a more flavorful distillate and smoother distillate, mainly for the reasons listed above. Shane Baker Co-Founder, Master Distiller Wilderness Trail Distillery
  26. 0 points
    SHL I hold you in the highest regard as an expert on this forum. I am here to contribute on Tech matters that I am well versed in only. My background is HVACR with Masters License in the State of Texas 1992. I have 30 years in and ran one of the shops for the Texas A&M system for about 7 years until I went to try a different sector. Before that I was a Heavy Commercial Service Tech in Dallas. I would agree single phase elements are the way to go. SCR control is nice when possible. Your product sounds first rate. Just for the record for the laypersons who do not have a lot of time in on electrical. The neutral conductor only comes into play in our world when dealing with 120v or 277V circuits. When working daily with and studying electrical systems, it is one of the most difficult conductors to properly understand. Especially with respect to it being a " grounded " conductor. I can recommend " Mike Holts " Electric Forum for anyone who is wanting to gain a greater degree of understanding. There are some sharp guys on that forum. We do not have a perfect setup here and were thrown into it with short information on a major fast track. I designed and built all the control panels for this Steam Fired Distillery under the gun. We are definitely still learning, but having had years of Brewery Experience to supplement with which crosses over fairly good on some fronts. ADI is a great resource. Sincerely
  27. 0 points
  28. 0 points
    From a previous post I made. This link does a pretty good job of explaining the codes that affect distilleries. http://ferar.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/pub_Distiller_Winter2018.pdf
  29. 0 points
    You always need some sort of ventilation for a distillery, both for air change-over for removal of background levels of alcohol and CO2, but also a higher speed exhaust for when large quantities might occur from spills, still swamps, etc.
  30. 0 points
    Hello! Hotel Tango Artisan Distillery is the first combat-disabled veteran owned distillery in the US. We offer a robust lineup of craft spirits and liqueurs, serving 5 states throughout the US, as well as being the premier provider of spirits to the US Military. This is our production/distilling group operating this account, looking to get more involved in the community, share knowledge, and hopefully locate proper homes for some of the equipment we'll be sure to outgrow as we expand! If you're in Indianapolis, or just passing through, reach out! Come say hi, take a quick tour of our distillery, and maybe even come swap some product!
  31. 0 points
    Look up a 1000-2000 sqft warehouse space near you. That's what it might cost. But how much it costs depends all the factors that Hedgebird supplied. He nor anyone else can give you even ballpark figures because it is all based on local factors. What is costs will vary wildly - urban, suburban, rural. Local government, fire inspectors etc can change that. There's very few easy questions when it comes to distilling and what you are asking isn't one of them.
  32. 0 points
    Brewcraft USA is where I get mine from. https://shop.brewcraftusa.com/
  33. 0 points
    It is amazing how simple adjustments can salvage an otherwise failed solution. Just slowing down the pump and spreading out the discharge over a wider area and we are dewatering without much trouble. https://youtu.be/Ap969PXSqfc
  34. 0 points
    I am sure they have a great show there. But seems crazy to pay that much. How much can one person absorb in that short of time, 6 days is long but it has taken years to get where I'm at today. Plus not every one is going to have the same distillery, or set up. For that price it should be tailor made just for you. Just sayin. You could pay me $6250 and follow me around for 2 weeks. 😁
  35. 0 points
    Corson's equipment is being auctioned. Thought some of you might be interested. https://www.idahostatesman.com/news/local/investigations/watchdog/article230947468.html
  36. 0 points
    Too bad the alcohol retail and distribution model is prime for disruption and disintermediation. Young consumers have zero desire for brick and mortar retail, especially undifferentiated retail. We know these new generations are heavily motivated by experience, and that plays a major role in the brands they associate with, and buy from. That said, the destination distillery, brewery, winery, cidery, or meadery represent a major threat to both retailers and distributors. This is disintermediation. I live in a major metro, I can buy from Amazon in the morning, and have it on my steps in the afternoon, even on Sunday, yes Sunday. I have to drive to 5 different stores to find the bottle I want? That's just f*cking stupid. I don't have cable TV, I don't watch any of the channels they want to shove down my throat with their packages. I want what I want, when I want it. This applies to everything today, it's not just cord cutting. If you don't have the beer I want, when I want it, I won't ever come back. I don't care that you have 300 cases of Bud and Coors stacked up, or that you have 100 other craft brews. I'll drive two hours, stand in line for two hours, get what I really want, post about it online, and not give a crap about your corner store ever again. This is disruption. Spend 15 minutes on the secondary market forums/communities online. You'll see everything you need to about how passionate consumers can be about products. Bourbon, beer, rum, wine, etc etc. You'll also see everything about why alcohol retail will die. Limited allocation, you need to spend thousands of dollars at a store to even have a chance at getting an allocated bottle, retailers charging absurd markups. If you aren't lucky enough to live in a major metro, with a good retailer, you don't stand a chance at being able to purchase many products. There are dozens of large distilleries that would be immensely more profitable if they could sell direct to consumer. There are probably hundreds of products that would be wildly successful, but can't make it there, because the distribution and retail model will never allow for it. Wineries are making a major push for direct to consumer, I suspect breweries will as well. Recreational pot is passing around the country. Sorry, but the protectionist, prohibitionalist, monopolistic alcohol distribution models are not long for this world.
  37. 0 points
    The best to do would to get a hold of an Corian installer and ask for a cut out from a kitchen sink. We just used CA glue (super glue) to put it together. I'm finding the legs to be unnecessary, may be just glue some tabs on the bottom to keep it in place over the chafing dish. The border on top helps a lot with collecting spillage and is just strips of Corian run through the table saw and had the edge rounded over with an 1/8" router bit. Good luck
  38. 0 points
    Corson manufacturing is notorious for dangerous equipment that is poorly made is in most instances does not function. Why are you selling such a beautiful brand new piece of equipment?
  39. 0 points
    Some videos This first one doesn't denonstrate correct shaft placement. They simply put it off center yet still vertical and say "see". This second video actually shows the correct placement, and it's very easy to see that it works much better than the other placements.
  40. 0 points
    Hoochware is another option to consider. We've been using it since day 1 and couldn't imagine being in this business without it!
  41. 0 points
    our jacketed baine marie has to have the air bled off every time we use it to get the max out of the jacket , seems when the jacket cools the vapour break sucks in air and needs to be bled off .
  42. 0 points
    Here is a PDF checklist to aid you in making beneficial comments: https://www.regulations.gov/docs/Tips_For_Submitting_Effective_Comments.pdf
  43. 0 points
    Just posted a comment to not restrict the type, size or shape of a barrel.
  44. 0 points
    If you bottle in a 750ml charred oak bottle, does it continue to age on the shelf ? That would great for the fake NAS operators, as at some point their labels might actually become legal. It's nice that the TTB has all of these regs, but if they aren't actually enforcing any of them, they are really nothing but a competitive disadvantage burden on distillers who actually follow the rules.
  45. 0 points
    Really happy I got to see and taste that operation when you guys were using these. Love to have one for brandy production, but direct fire would send my fire marshal over the top.
  46. 0 points
    The short of it: The biggest thing that the BiR does vs CGMS is that the BiR gives you a magnified experience of your spirit and not just an ingredients list. I've been following Stephen's work for several years, much like I assume other have also. Based on that this is my take on this without owning it: The BiR magnifies the organoleptic qualities of your spirit. I think that if you produce the same spirit repeatedly you could use it to notice drift. You could also use it to magnify differences if you were to change variables in your protocols - raw materials (vendors?), yeast, fermentation time/temp, cuts. I think to best realize what the BiR can do is for you to work with a craft distiller to setup experiments where you do minor changes to variables and record the results. Right now it's too amorphous and too many people don't understand what it can do since no one other than you has done anything with it significantly since Arroyo. First up - brew the same wash with 5-6 different yeasts and everything else stays the same. Can you tell the difference in the final spirit? Can you tell the difference in the BiR output? Is it easier to tell the difference?
  47. 0 points
    Anyone legally making "moonshine" should be making plans of how they gunna liquidate there distillery when it goes out of business. Its the dumbest thing going on in our industry. I'd at give someone a little respect if they said they were makin unaged whiskey or corn whiskey (i still question anyone who buys the stuff because its fing gross!)
  48. 0 points
    Well here is my 20c worth :-) A column is only needed when you want to rectify the spirit. Some Gin distiller insist a column is essential most do not. A column can strip out some of the botanicals. Assuming you are using a good NGS as input, then a basic pot still with a Gin Head will work. A lot of Gin Distillers get very complicated with still configuration and design, claiming it is essential to their formulation. They key is experimentation. Produce what you can sell. Its that simple. Very small batches will give you consistency problems. But you dont want your entire working capital tied up in un-sold stock. In small startups, I find the still budget therefore size answers this question. This is down to personal taste and what you desire in the end. Some botanicals respond well to spirit maceration well before distillation, others do not. The general rule of thumb with gin is a gin head in the vapour path yields better results. Experiment, you will probably need both methods to produce your final design. eBay When you say Asia, can you be more specific? Its a big place. The alcohol laws in Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Thailand are utterly draconian for a distiller, but improving. This example is a common trend in Gin production where they are distilling all the botanicals separately and blending the individual spirits afterwards. Its a popular trend outside of Europe as the ROW often struggles to get batch after batch consistent quality with botanicals purchased. One order the junipers are plump, un-ripe, and carrying way too much moisture, the next are dry, dusty mouldy old bullets. in Asia, Thailand is one of the biggest suppliers of quality glass. Note when I say quality. Most of the glass from India and China I have found to be of very unpredictable quality. France is still the king of high end glass (SaverGlass) and Italy (BruniGroup) a close second. Glass always becomes an issue of the practical minimum buy, versus the cost of shipping. Remember a pallet contains about 600-800 bottles, so 1 pallett is often a good starting place. For a vintage reproduction check SaverGlass and Bruni. A custom mold, and minimum run costs can cripple a start-up. Look to a catalogue design, think outside the square with regard to ink, coatings, labels to give the effect you desire. The cheapest place I am finding for custom glass and molds at present in Eastern Europe (Romania, Poland, Czech Rep) In my opinion 90% of start-up distilleries fail because they fail to establish a distribution model. Great product, good back story, funky design and bottle, no customers. The second aspect I see is crap product. If it aint a great product, no amount of customers will buy it (well a second time LOL). Growing your own botanicals could be a great back story, as long as you don't become a farmer above being a distiller.
  49. 0 points
    Wow, That's got to be the worst customer relations situation I've ever heard of. If you need elements you should look to your local hardware store for water heater elements (ULWD rated) Hope that this will help others avoid similar problems...
  50. 0 points
    Acid control of the fermentables is an important step. Starch conversion via alpha amylase enzyme reaction (read, malt) is maximized within a narrow Ph band, as well as a narrow temperature band. As mentioned, an acid rest at around 38 deg C was used by many brewers using decoction or step mash techniques...the phytase rest is a good option if you have time and lots of undermodified malts, but with today's malt having diastatic superpowers, it is relatively rare. Why spend an hour or more at low temp, when you can simply toss in some acidulated malt or even some citric acid? When making sake, the yeast syoubu is prepared with a boiled polished rice, and inoculated with a lactobacillus to sour the mash. Once the acid level has reached a certain point (after about a day) the syoubu is inoculated with yeast...the lactobacillus is aggressive enough to kill off any bacteria that may outcompete the yeast. In a traditional "yamahai" sake, the syoubu isn't inoculated with lactobacillus...instead the toji waits for the syoubu to infect naturally with a lacto, and uses that. It takes quite a bit longer. Personally, if a mash "soured" spontaneously, I'd try overpitching. Having said that, I'd also plate the liquid and make sure it's not a strep or pedi infection. Most infections can be forced out with an aggressive yeast. I'd not say that for beer, but we're producing alcohol for distilling, here. You can reheat the mash to about 170 F, and that should kill most things that would present a problem. Then repitch. If you find there is an unpleasant off-flavor, make sure it doesn't happen again! Some belgian beers are sour mashed to increase acidic mouthfeel, but they are fermented on Brettanomyces and further soured. After discussing this with a friend and mentor distiller, he mentioned that soured mashes, when soured with a lacto, tend to help in two ways. He said that lower Ph in the wash makes it easier to clean the pot, and keeps the mash from sticking to the copper. He also said that alcohol distilled off of a sour mash has a "softer" mouthfeel. He couldn't offer me any scientific explanation for these, but I'm inclined to bow to his vastly superior experience Hope some of this helps....
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