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Everything posted by JustAndy

  1. JustAndy

    Re-selling Bourbon Barrels

    Yes, it's around here in Portland I see $75-$150 for single use 53 gal ex-bourbon depending on condition and how many you're buying.
  2. JustAndy

    How Much Should Proofing/Bottling Cost?

    Perhaps they don't have a DSP, and have contract whiskey being stored at a rickhouse that doesn't have a bottling plant. It depends on the label details and frippery, but I've seen about $1/bottle for bottling/labeling, with a setup fee for changing over to your product and some times additional one-time fees if the bottling line needs different jigs to accommodate the bottle.
  3. JustAndy

    Seeking Suggestions for Wet Milling Equipment

  4. JustAndy

    Cleaning RBFs

    I found using a stir bar on a magnetic stirrer/hot plate was a big help in preventing tarry residue. Also immediately dumping the flask after turning off the heat so it didn't dry onto the glass.
  5. This place did I think http://www.shinedistillerygrill.com/
  6. JustAndy

    Ethanol from Almond Shells

    @Skaalvenn I think this is what you are talking about http://www.spiritopia.com/faq/company-name/
  7. JustAndy

    Help! Artemisia pontica..

    I got mine from Perennial Pleasures in Vermont (https://perennialpleasures.net/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Perennial-Pleasures-Catalog.pdf). Took a couple of years to get established but looks great now. For a. absintheum I got starts from Loghouse and also grew some from seed from Strickly Medicinal, the Log House plants seem truer to type https://loghouseplants.com/plants/shop/artemisia-wormwood-artemisia-absinthiumn-2/
  8. JustAndy

    Help! Artemisia pontica..

    He's really giving it the hard sell, amazing he has any left in stock.... "This imported Roman, Petite absinthe (Pontica) is the best imported pontica I can source, it looks like saw dust, smells like saw dust and is nothing like what I grow myself"
  9. JustAndy

    Sourcing Talent

    Depending on your size/goals/products etc, you'll find a much deeper talent pool looking at brewers or winemakers and hiring a consultant to train them on the distilling side. If you don't have any production experience, you should also be hiring distilling expertise well before you being building/equipping your distillery. The 'turnkey' packages that some still manufacturers tout in my experience have included a lot of unnecessary or inappropriate equipment which inexperienced owners don't know enough to push back on.
  10. JustAndy

    Wheated Rye

    We've done it, it's good. Gives a bit more mouthfeel and sweetness to it. I prefer our 100% Rye, but I liked the wheated rye over the corned Rye and barley malt Rye we've done.
  11. JustAndy

    New barrel providers?

    We've used both, the Kelvin barrels are quite smoky tasting compared to other barrels we've used with similar specs (size, air drying, toasting, charring). They seem to be pretty good quality compared to some other suppliers we've gotten barrels from (Blackswan being the absolute worst). The ISC barrels offer a lot of options these days for toasting/charring/aging, and they also do a lot of research and testing (https://www.amazon.com/International-Symposium-reasearch-Highlights-Symposiums/dp/B005X9KQYS) and if you know the flavor profile you are looking for they can guide you to the right barrel. The barrels are some times a bit rough looking, but every one so far hasn't needed any reworking for leaks. The turn-around was very fast the last time we ordered, and we'll probably get our next lot from them as well
  12. JustAndy

    Benefits of Tube in Jacket Condensers?

    My experience in Cognac and visiting scotch distilleries that still have worm tubs aligns with what Tom says, they using them to produce a specific flavor not because they are easier to make. In Cognac, I know of producers who alter the temperature of the distillate intentionally depending on the volatility of the wine or spirit (similarly the wine distillation is condensed at a lower temperature than the spirit distillation). I'm sure you could achieve this with a tube-in-shell, although on our hybrid pot still it is tricky. I've also seen stainless steel worm tub condenser in chinese baijiu distilleries, although that might be because they are more simple to make.
  13. JustAndy

    Benefits of Tube in Jacket Condensers?

    Increased copper contact (if it is a copper shell in tube) https://scotchwhisky.com/magazine/ask-the-professor/14920/condensers-how-do-they-affect-flavour/ , easier to clean, simpler to operate with a reflux condenser.
  14. JustAndy

    Joint Venture with local Brewery

    We've had breweries produce wash for us, and so have many of the distilleries in my area. The trouble gets to be finding a reliable partner, as wash production doesn't make the brewery much $$, so as soon as they have the opportunity to make (and sell) finished beer instead they will drop you to do it. I don't believe you need to pay any taxes if yeast is pitched, if there is alcohol in the wash when you move it you need to do a transfer-in-bond just like receiving wine. Easier to assume no alcohol has been created and it is raw material.
  15. JustAndy

    I will build my distillery from ground-up. But I need HELP!

    It really depends on what you are trying to achieve, but the German still makers Holstein, Muller, and probably CARL have models which can be heated directly with wood (the ones I've seen have a firebox heating a water bath or jacket).http://www.alambics-sofac.fr/ who make and work on traditional french Armagnac could likely direct you to or build you wood-fired still.
  16. JustAndy

    I will build my distillery from ground-up. But I need HELP!

    What makes the abundance of ready built equipment not suitable for your location? Hiring someone who has already figured this out will likely be much cheaper, easier, and yield a better quality product than cobbling together a bunch of numbers from random online sources.
  17. JustAndy

    Aging Options.

    Oak additions is not the way to make a top notch product. There are many cooperages in Spain that work with American oak. http://www.tacopal.com/ingles.htm makes charred barrels
  18. We are having a problem which has left me scratching my head a bit. The fores, heads, and early parts of the heart are coming over with a pale greenish/yellow tint. It starts most intense at the heads and generally lessens as the run goes on. It looks different than the copper contamination I've seen from other stills, there isn't any blueish and shades more towards yellow. We've done 6 distillations of wine and it has happened the same way each time. We are distilling a 14% abv red wine made from Syrah, the wine has no added SO2 and doesn't present as flawed (no obvious VA,brett, infections). Wine pH is ~3.8 We are running a 4 plate Kothe still; it has a copper boiler, stainless column with copper plates and dephleg, and a stainless steel condenser. The lyne arm to condenser is stainless and has an upward J, so liquid generally drains back to dephleg and not condenser. It is heated very slowly via bain marie and no wine generally boils/foams into the plates. We generally distill brandy in a single pass, using the plates and dephleg with a heads cut from 182 to 175, adjust dephleg down and a hearts cut 165-145. The still is cleaned with 80C water after every distillation and receives a citric acid rinse generally when we switch between products or the copper is looking tired. We've distilled probably 300+ runs of wine on this still without encountering this. I've tried degassing the wine to remove co2, which didn't change anything. I gave the still a through cleaning & citric acid treatment, as well as dissembling the lyne arm to look for corrosion or debris but it looked clean. Adding baking soda to the diluted greenish fraction doesn't alter the color, but after a period of time it appears some of the green drops out and the fraction is clearer when decanted. Today I am going to redistill the greenish portion as well as try filtering it through a .25 micron filter to see what happens but I would appreciate some theories on what's going on.
  19. JustAndy

    Industry news/research websites/magazines?

    https://thewhiskeywash.com/ http://www.spiritedbiz.com/ https://www.winebusiness.com/ http://artisanspiritmag.com/ https://www.thespiritsbusiness.com/ http://www.alcademics.com/2017/01/new-booze-2017.html
  20. JustAndy

    Analytical Labs

  21. JustAndy

    White Whiskey

    The House Spirits example was also approved probably 10+ years ago, so there has probably been some turn-over and clarifications to the approval process.
  22. JustAndy

    Barreling Question

    I wouldn't sweat it. 4.5 gallons isn't all that much head space, we see that liquid level in the barrel about a year after filling. We also have some half-filled barrels, in my experience the extra head space helps move the spirit along but also increases the angel share a bit. All the half-full ones are where I can see them in case they develop leaks as I've heard that can happen but haven't seen much evidence of it.
  23. JustAndy

    Proof affecting oxidation in barrels?

    Think about how much easier 12% abv wine oxidizes vs 22% abv port.
  24. JustAndy

    Proof affecting oxidation in barrels?

    http://www.iscbarrels.com/2018/01/30/oxygenation-part-1/ "To add further complication, the effects of these variables are not static throughout the aging process. As the barrel ages, the wood becomes increasingly more saturated with alcohol. As this happens, the rate at which the oxygen can permeate through the wood changes. The diffusion of oxygen in air is multitudes greater than that of its diffusion through water. This suggests that as the barrel becomes more saturated over time, the rate at which oxygen transfers through the wood slowly decreases. Furthermore, the diffusion coefficient of oxygen in ethanol differs from that of water which would suggest that entry proof has an effect as well."
  25. JustAndy

    Product finishes too hot

    Do you make the base or use a sourced GNS? If you use GNS, do you perform QA on each lot? GNS quality can vary a lot depending on the producer/source, and if you get it through an intermediary you might be getting it from a different producer without being informed. If you make the base yourself, did you compare that to your typical starting point? Changes in fermentation temps, yeast strain, yeast nutrients, and mash abv can all have an impact on flavor or perception of alcohol 'heat'. Similarly, your cut points can have a big impact, and seasonal changes in cooling water temperature can have an impact on still performance and cut points which might also change the perception of alcohol. I wouldn't discount getting your botanicals from a different source, especially as many gin botanicals can have a 'heat' of their own (ginger, cubeb, cardamom, grains of paradise, coriander to name a few). Juniper from different sources can dramatically shift the flavor, I have trialed some which had significantly more bite/harshness/chemical aroma than others. Sitting for 2 months after distillation (or even a week) will also change the mouthfeel and aroma of the distillate quite a bit.