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JustAndy

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  1. I've seen cognac producers altering their condenser temperature to change the distillate, specifically using a higher condensing temperature when dealing with wine that has elevated levels of VA to allow some of those components to offgas/volatilize back out of the spirit more easily. Similarly, I've experienced that a difference of 60 vs 80 F spirit out temp very much changes the aroma profile of gin, with the hotter spirit having less floral and fruit notes. There are quite a few scotch malt distilleries which have a 2nd condenser or 'sub-cooler', and I imagine its common in rum distilleries. It might be useful for hotter incoming water temps but the systems I've seen in Scotland were being used to get hotter process water out. Glenallachie was using a sub-cooler to alter the condensation point within the condenser to change the amount of copper contact the spirit was reaching, which is a very interesting concept.
  2. I think that more draws from etymology, the root arabic word moving into different cultures as distillation spread ending up with very different local alcohols all having similar names arak, araq, arragh, arrack, etc, basically depending on what the local feedstock was.
  3. That's probably true as well, but I assumed that use of koji rice in brown sugar shochu was to provide some yeast nutrients and acid modulation, as sugar can be deficient in both.
  4. https://www.ttb.gov/images/industry_circulars/archives/2007/pre-cola_eval_spirits.pdf A formula is required for many spirit categories that contain botanicals or flavoring ingredients to make sure they don't contain prohibited ingredients.
  5. Yes, whether it was occurring in a traditional mash tun or a modern lauter tun for scotch malt whisky the sugary liquid is being separated from the grain residue. Some are even using mash filters now (a press) but with the same objective. If you go waaaaay back there was likely whisky distilled in Scotland which was distilled on grain and included grains like oats and rye, but that's not really relevant to what's called scotch today. Blended scotch contains some amount of column distilled grain whisky, which is made similar to bourbon (unmalted grains cooked and then cooled and converted with malted barley) albeit distilled to a typically much higher strength.
  6. I think you might be misunderstanding something; malt whiskey in Scotland is (and has been for a couple hundred years) produced from a lautered wort. The grain whisky component of blended scotch is produced from an 'on-grain' mash which is distilled in a continuous column, but it's principally either wheat or corn with malted barley in a small proportion to provide enzymes. There are a couple of distilleries doing something aberrant to that like Loch Lomond, but I don't believe distilling malt whisky 'on-grain' has ever been remotely common in the commercial scotch whisky industry. If you have evidence to the contrary I'd love to see it, as I'm proof reading someone's manuscript on Scotch whisky right now
  7. I've tried some malt whiskeys that were produced 'on-grain' from hammer-milled barley malt and I thought the flavor was not good, very harsh, bitter, and funky. But it's hard to say if that was because they were made ongrain or if they were just badly made whiskeys. RE the new or used barrels, the american single malt commission is pushing for the definition to allow used barrels http://www.americansinglemaltwhiskey.org/ and several notable producers including Westland already incorporate used barrels into their releases, you just have to have the language right on your label.
  8. There is a style of shochu made with koji-rice and sugar (kokuto shocho), as well a sort of similar process for batavia Arrack made with molasses and an inoculated rice starter.
  9. Do you know anyone who has done the distillery specific courses at Siebel's and their feedback on it? I know plenty of people who have gone for their brewing training which is very credible but the distilling courses are relatively new I think.
  10. I think what you are describing is similar to the machine built by Detroit Still Works, http://detroitstillworks.com/ , I'm not positive of anyone that installed one but I vaguely remember hearing that Graton Distilling had one.
  11. That seems like an insane amount of filters to process 240 gal of whiskey. If only some of the bottles get hazy are they the first ones you bottled or the last ones? Do you have pressure gauges on the filters to make sure you aren't exceeding their functional pressures?
  12. I would say if you are having troubles, you should change your process; at the small distillery where I work we make about 75-100 100% rye mashes a year without any more difficulty and than bourbon, oats, wheat, etc.
  13. Did you rinse the filter first? Did you rinse the carbon?
  14. How much rye did you use and was it malted or unmalted? If you used unmalted rye, it's likely you got very little fermentable sugar from the grain unless it was very finely milled. The temperatures you quoted are related to the enzymatic conversion of starch to sugar, but first the starch made available for conversion, basically to be broken apart from the very sturdy way the grain has stored it. With malt, the malting process has already begin this transformation but with raw grain some combination of physical disruption (milling), heat, hydration, acid, and enyzmes is necessary.
  15. Take some of your rye flour and cook it without enzyme and see where the gel temp is, I think there is quite a bit more of a range of gelatinization temperatures than a firm 158F, as the protein, moisture level, etc are all variable lot to lot. We go up to 175, and our bglucanese begins to denature at 60C so it needs another dose after gel/hydrolsis and cooling to work effectively. I'm not a starch scientist, and there might be a more effective way to do it but we rarely see significant foaming in the fermenter and only get serious foaming in the still when there have been mashing/temperature issues.
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