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About StonesRyan

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  1. Wages for production assistant?

    Thanks, guys! Our intern declined the job starting him at $12/hr as he was expecting closer to $30/hr - even after I showed him a job listing for an established brewery offering $14/hr for a head brewer with minimum two years professional experience. Apparently he didn't bother to do much research into the industry pay rates before he decided to pursue a career in brewing/ distilling.
  2. Hoping that I'm posting in the right place... I'm hoping for some feedback and suggestions as to a reasonable wage for a production assistant with no experience beyond a 12 month certificate in applied craft brewing (+ ~100 hours as an intern in our distillery) and some home brewing experience. What are others paying folks for what is basically unskilled labor and will require much supervision and additional training in order to eventually be able to manage the various processes and reporting without supervision?
  3. Bar top Corking maching

    fstmatt, looking forward to seeing the pics!
  4. Bar top Corking maching

    fstmatt, that looks like it was/ is painful. Speedy recovery!
  5. Bar top Corking maching

    Jedd Haas, care to share a pic of what you built? We aren't so lucky as to have closures that are so easily inserted by hand. We've been doing them that way for the last two years but your hands are pretty sore by the end of a bottling run. It's definitely not the quickest part of our process currently.
  6. Bar top Corking maching

    fstmatt, that looks awesome! I'm hoping to find something pretty quickly! CCR Engineering appears to have some great options for all budgets.
  7. Bar top Corking maching

    Hey Hedgebird, did you ever locate a manual t-top corker?
  8. Trouble with Aged Aquavit COLA

    Hey Bluestar, I'm working on an aged aquavit label but have found that they're just as strict with it as with aged gins. My greatest frustration stems from their inconsistency with regard to enforcement which causes unfair advantages for those fortunate enough to get a prohibited label approved.
  9. Trouble with Aged Aquavit COLA

    @Skaalvenn, that's funny! Whatever works! @bluestar, for the back of the label I was told by TTB via email that I could use "The golden color comes as the result of being stored in charred oak barrels". Despite being pre-approved, it was declined. I'd previously submitted "The golden color comes as the result of time spent in charred oak barrels" and "The golden color comes as the result of time spent maturing in charred oak barrels", both of which were also declined. TTB is still saying these are "age statements" and are misleading which has me entry frustrated as the statement is in direct reference to the cause of color rather than age. Anyway, I'm with you regarding getting this regulation changed to be more inclusive of any spirit that's been aged as they all undergo the same changes within the barrel so anything short of calling it what it is is what's misleading to the consumer. How do we go about getting something like this changed? Most of us little guys don't have the lobbying power, or money, to compete with the big whiskey makers unless we were able to convince ADI or ACSA to take it on on the behalf of us all. I fear they have their hands full with the FET reduction currently and perhaps there are a lot of small whiskey producers that would be against such a change anyway. I'm on board if you have any suggestions or ideas to get something like this moving!
  10. Trouble with Aged Aquavit COLA

    Any suggestions?
  11. Trouble with Aged Aquavit COLA

    Anyone out there have any experience with a COLA for aged gin or aquavit that can help shed some light on COLA's? I've submitted a COLA with verbiage on the back of the label that stated "the golden color is the result of time spent maturing in charred oak barrels". That version was kicked back and I was told to remove the word "maturing". That makes sense, I guess. I made the requested change and resubmitted only to have TTB now tell me I have to remove the whole sentence in it's entirety because they say it's an age statement. When I point out that it's in direct reference to the color specifically they insisted it's still an age statement. Exactly how do they define an age statement? They claim to not allow the words aged, matured, etc so as not to mislead consumers yet it undergoes the same exact process within the barrel as whiskey does but somehow it's misleading to call both spirits "aged"? I disagree with TTB on this but I can live with that as it's what is stated in the CFR. What I can't understand is the idea that specifically referencing the color of the spirit is somehow also an age reference. The agent I spoke with suggested that I say "the color is the result of time well spent". That doesn't make any sense and it's not even a complete sentence yet somehow according to TTB it's not misleading while the added clarification of "in oak barrels" is. Any suggestions of how I can convey my message while appeasing TTB? On a sidenote, the TTB agent I spoke with also argued with me that aquavit isn't traditionally aged yet Linie, and others, have been doing it for a couple hundred years at least. So how long must something be done in order for TTB to consider it "traditional"?
  12. Thujone Content

    Thanks, Tom. Do you know of anywhere that can perform thujone testing besides TTB?
  13. Thujone Content

    @Tom Lenerz, I understand that he's technically correct, however my question is about peoples experiences relating specifically to the recipes in the book. And I'm looking for a practical answer, not a technical answer. I highly doubt anyone is testing every batch of wormwood or absinthe. Anyway, I've read a number of threads here and elsewhere with people inquiring about labs that are capable of testing thujone content and I've yet to see anyone provide an answer other than TTB - so the technical answer doesn't appear to provide a realistic solution.
  14. Thujone Content

    @TheMechWarrior, you seem to be overcomplicating my question. I'm simply asking if people have had success submitting samples based on the recipes in the book with the called for amounts of Wormwood. Testing each batch of wormwood or absinthe isn't remotely practical.
  15. Thujone Content

    @TheMechWarrior, I've done trials with the recipes in the book. I'm asking if anyone knows if those recipes have an allowable thujone content when using the required amounts of wormwood. As far as testing goes, I've yet to find in reading other threads of any thujone testing lab besides TTB - but I'm curious to know if you have a suggestion for a third party lab that has the ability to test for thujone. My hope is to not rely on the TTB for testing my formulations until I reach the allowable thujone level as this could take a considerable amount of time. @glisade, are you able to point me in the direction the paper you're referencing? Also, what was the quantity of wormwood you used in relation to neutral spirit? If you're willing to share that info I think it would help greatly in giving me a basis for allowable limits.