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Roger

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Roger last won the day on May 9

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  1. Topping off barrels

    Nope - There is no minimum or maximum proof that is in a barrel. There is a maximum proof that can be initially put into the barrel, and a minimum proof that can be bottled and called whiskey, but those are completely different issues. There are currently products on the market such as Bookers Cask Strength Bourbon at 130 proof. How's that, you say ? I would think it's because they would merely use product that was put in a barrel at under 125p, allow sufficient angels share H2o evaporation, then dump and cut to 130p (or not). Following that logic, that if you initially filled at 70p, by the time it was straight, at 5% loss per year (+/- 50% Spirit/H2o) you would certainly be above minimum bottling strength. At no time are your required to reguage a barrel during the aging process, as to do so would mean that you would constantly be changing your inventory based on angels share evaporation (or not). And lastly on the formula issue, as I mentioned in the beginning, I was advised by COLA, to submit the request to FORMULA, which i did.
  2. Liquid Yule log IMG_3252.MOV
  3. Topping off barrels

    I believe the regulations allow this, provided that it is distilled in the same location and is the same product, but it must carry the date of the last addition. As for all the rest, thanks everyone for the dialogue. I think we all have enough regulatory info to move forward in any direction people choose, if at all. I am however done discussing nuance of process and results in the open. There are too many fakilleries and re-bubblers on this site to risk giving up proprietary process info. Anyone who is a real distiller (and I define that as 100% of your products are fermented, distilled and bottled in your facility) then please message me direct and I would be happy to discuss. Prost/Roger
  4. Topping off barrels

    Our interest in this is not in reference to proof reduction heat mitigation(slowly adding proof water) although we do subscribe to that theory, especially with brandy, up to and including proofing with ice. The OP is entirely based on aging/maturing a larger portion of the finished product that ends up in the bottle. If industry standard is 5% evaporation per year, then the refreshing process should remain pretty lineal. But again it's all personal choice on the path you choose to take with your products and branding.
  5. Topping off barrels

    These are all "Craft Issues" . Granted one would have a hard time hitting the same old representative flavor profile with this technique, but that is exactly the point of the exercise. I have no desire to make cookie cutter whiskey. I will leave that to Big Gulp and the pretenders. I am personally sick of hearing "Single Barrel" while knowing that the producers do everything in their power to make sure that "Single Barrel" tastes exactly like the last one. Prost/Roger
  6. Topping off barrels

    While I don't disagree that the TTB boilerplate response is somewhat cryptic, I do not believe it is in reference to HCFBM. There is no mention in any TTB publications that they consider H2o to be HCFBM, therein I can't see it being restricted to 2.5%. Even if it was, 2.5% of what ? Proof gallons ? Wine gallons ?. i see it as a done deal. We will proceed to market, and I will advise if we hit a future stumbling block. Prost/Roger
  7. Topping off barrels

    I submitted a rudimentary formula with commentary, and has received a response as follows: Submitted Formula: (Whisky) 1 - Combine grains as desired (as listed) with water in Mashing Tank. 2 - Heat to sufficient temperature to bring about starch conversion to sugar 3 - Remove from Mash Tank, and place in fermentation tank with natural yeast 4 - After fermentation move to still, and distill to less than 160 proof 5 - After distillation, reduce to less than 125 proof for storage in New Charred Oak Barrels 6 - Periodically add additional water only, to barrel to replace loss due to evaporation. 7 - After sufficient aging as required for labeling straight or not, remove from barrels and reduce in proof to not less than 80 proof, with water. Bottle in house, and label as straight or not, depending on age with age being represented as fist date of alcohol placed in new charred oak barrels --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Submitted Comment: Herein requesting formal TTB clarification on the ability to add Water only to barrels of whiskey to replace water loss through angels share / evaporation over a period of time, while not affecting standards of identity or age change from initial fill. Requesting clarification, as have been advised by labeling that confirmation of this process must come from formulation department. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Results: The product has been rejected for the following reasons: Formula not required per 2016-3 - This distilled spirit product does not require formula review nor sample analysis. You may proceed to Labeling. [See TTB Ruling 2016-3] Additional Description - This whisky does not require formula review. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  8. Blending Our Vodka and NGS Labeling

    Just photocopy a Tito's label, and put in the appropriate % and don't forget to enter a lot of Honey Boo Boo pay to play spirits competitions, to ring up some fancy medals.
  9. Topping off barrels

    No answer from formulas yet. I'm thinking of submitting a formula, even though there is no indication that it would need a formula. I am quite surprised that Labeling didn't know, as this entire issue relates to labeling.
  10. Topping off barrels

    Hey Matt - correct in that we are all paying based on the alcohol only, not the water. As you know, the gauging takes into account actual H2o, which we then extrapolate to 50% to give us the proof gallons that the TTb requires for reporting. But they don't care if it is actually 50% or some other number in the actual product. They are just after the numbers in relationship to that "proof gallon" prost/Roger
  11. Topping off barrels

    Items discussed on this thread help to further define Craft Distilling, vs Fake Craft as described in the attached classic Cramer CNBC video. If you want to be like ever other commodity big gulp producer or re-bottler, re-bubbler selling the same old thing under "Craft Labels" then don't push the envelope. Just take what you are given. In fact this issues in and of itself allows real Craft Distillers to do something that Fake Craft can't provide, as they typically receive their already aged products in plastic totes. I am almost positive that when you add H2o to bulk purchased Whiskey in plastic totes, you can't alter it. Go Craft, or Go home . https://www.cnbc.com/2017/12/01/cramer-finds-a-genius-under-the-radar-booze-maker-to-buy-on-a-dip.html
  12. Topping off barrels

    Thanks for all of the dialogue on this. I believe spirits only have to be gauged when the barrel is filled, and later in production. Water does not in any way change the standards of identity once initially filled at<125p, all the way to the bottle "provided that it is not bottled at less than 80p" (i.e angels share evaporation of H20 to over 125p while in the barrel does not trigger a "new product" status) therein why should additional H2O trigger a change ? This is not an issue of re-using a barrel, as that rule applies to adding whiskey to a barrel. We are not adding whiskey to a barrel, we are adding H2o. Nor does this have anything to do with blending". Blending is in reference to whisky's, rum's, etc... or the addition of HCFB's etc. At any given time, we have a dozen different half dumped barrels in our building, and certainly every barrel loses angels share, so this seems like a rather fundamental operational question. Put another way: If you have 4 year old straight bourbon coming out of the barrel at 130p, and you add H20 for bottling, isn't it really "younger" than if 5 gallons of that same water had been added back into the barrel 2 years ago to replace evaporation ? More importantly would the end product (the final cut in the bottle) not be improved because a larger portion of it would have been barrel aged ?
  13. Topping off barrels

    Put simply, when you dump a full 53gal barrel of say 120p to cut to bottle strength, you are really at that point out of the DSP business, and now in the bar tender business , I.e. Do you want that "straight up, neat, or with water". You can no longer affect the flavor process. You might change the "perception of flavor" process by cutting the alcohol to a degree that it does not offend the tongue with intensity, but thats a different thing than flavor. Whereas if you dump some part of the barrel (which we do all the time, as we sell through our tasting room) you can just let the rest sit in the barrel till you need it, but that appears to not be optimal for continued maturation of the remaining product. For one reason, a topping off can put more total liquid in contact with barrel surface. More importantly it allows for continued chemical reacting and blending of the added H2o with the alcohol in the barrel over what may be additional months, or years. The end result being more blended aged alcohol and water at a specific proof, vs a blend of aged alcohol and clear water at the same proof. It would be like filling your barrels at 90p, and bottling with no proof cutting, vs filling at 120p and cutting with water to 90p before bottling. Some in the industry advocate maturing at a lower proof, with the thought that the H2o provides more flavor interaction with the oak than does higher proof alcohol. More logically the lower proof fill is more robust in flavor, because it doesn't get diluted with as much fresh water at bottling, but has had that H2o in process, to allow for chemical change. Maturing at a specific proof is a balance between profitability and flavor desire. You get a lot less whiskey from a 90p barrel proof, than you do at 120p, however the 90p is generally accepted as more complex and flavorfull. tks
  14. Topping off barrels

    Thanks. I can't find it anywhere in writing so I've got a call into formulation. Labeling didn't know so they suggested formula.
  15. Topping off barrels

    Can you legally top off a barrel with water, as you lose product to Angel's share , or if you draw down a barrel for sales ? Rough Scenario. 53g Barrel of straight whiskey 120p (2 years old), dump 20 gallons for sale. Add 11 gallons H2O and continue to mature. Does the clock stop, or because you have not added "new alcohol" the clock continues to run ?
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