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About broon

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  1. broon

    GNS Quality

    Good morning all A quick question for the collective expertise out there. We use grain spirit from one of the main UK suppliers. It's the best quality wheat-based NGS they supply and is supplied at c.96% abv. Although it is "neutral", it's still noticeably tainted with the aniseed and black pepper flavours you get in wheat based spirit. This gives it a noticeable back-of-the-tongue 'burn' which is still present post-distillation (even where we take relatively chunky heads and tails cuts). For info, we run low and slow in a potstill (albeit with a couple of column plates) with output at c.88% abv. My questions are: 1. Have any of you noticed similar with their NGS supply? 2. Any preferences in NGS suppliers? 3. Should we be rectifying with an initial distillation to clean the spirit prior to our product run (gin)? I've picked up mixed views on this. (I should note that as a small producer we currently buy duty paid so a prior distillation will result in a potentially significant reduction in yield). Thanks all
  2. broon

    Gin Bitterness - Berries or sharper cuts needed?!

    Great stuff, appreciate the responses. The berries originally used were small and very dry (and there was a element of bitterness even in the previous less concentrated runs) so I've ordered some samples from other suppliers to run a more meaningful comparison. There may also be a contributory issue with my small test still (never easy to get a feel using small volumes) and I'll certainly tweak the speed of take-off to see if this makes a difference. Given the small volumes we produce and relatively small amounts of botanics we order, consistency of the juniper may continue to be a bit of a challenge I expect. All part of the continuing experience, however. Never a dull moment (although there are a few frustrating ones!)
  3. broon

    Gin Bitterness - Berries or sharper cuts needed?!

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  4. Happy New Year All First post after a long time lurking but here goes. In my gin distilling, I've recently increased juniper concentration from about 12 to 18g per litre of 50% neutral charge. Distillate comes off the still at 85% abv. However, when the output drops to about 82% (c. 55% yield), there's a very astringent, unpleasant bitterness coming through. I did a small test run using just the juniper berries and this is certainly where the bitterness flavour stems from. I didn't crush the juniper berries but did macerate for 12 hours prior to distillation (berries in the pot). I'm a bit concerned as I expected to be able to run hearts to lower than this (79/80% at least) but doing so taints the gin. The early hearts are great but the bitterness comes on pretty hard and it's nasty! Could this be a bad batch of berries or do I just need to be tighter when cutting to tails? Is my yield even close to an acceptable range? Would really appreciate your views. Many thanks. Broon