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Silk City Distillers

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Everything posted by Silk City Distillers

  1. Is there any reason why you wouldn’t strip more than one batch before you do a spirit run? Also, with 5 plates available, why didn’t you run it single pass? Also keep in mind that you likely may not be able to use 5 plates on a whiskey strip - as you’ll easily be above 160 proof - unless you add a lot of water.
  2. Seems that most all of the "calculators" associated with websites that sell products to home distillers and hobbyists tend to radically overstate product yield. Not sure that it should be a surprise.
  3. Experiment I've been meaning to try - lay down a few barrels of a heady-cut ale yeast whiskey for longer term aging - to be used as blending stock with a more traditional cut/fermented whiskey. The more liberal heads cut to try to counteract the loss of ester-character in longer-aged spirit. Obviously you wouldn't go to the bottle straight with something like this, but it might be an interesting way to reintroduce more ale yeast-character into the final product.
  4. Yes, I love to mixed ferment. Generally though, I'm doing it because I'm pitching an esoteric slow fermenting yeast first - Torulaspora, Metschnikowia, - or bacteria, etc. And giving it a solid 24-36 hours to build character before pitching the heavy hitter. Why the desire to co-pitch? Are you assuming attenuation is going to be a problem? At reasonable starting gravities, it's not problematic. I use a number of ale yeasts, none of which have had any issues fermenting down to 1.000sg. S-04, US-05, Nottingham, ECY10, etc. Chalk it up to slightly warmer fermentation temperatures (high 70s), high nutrient (backset), agitation in fermenters to reduce early floc., and mashing with little to no residual dextrins/unfermentables (glucoamylase). Nottingham is hands down, one of my favorite whiskey yeasts. Couple things to keep in mind. In my experience, high starting gravities are going to make this more challenging, not less, especially if your first pitch yeast is a fast fermenter. By the 24-36h mark, you've already created enough alcohol to create a stressful environment for the new pitch, at that point there may be enough of the Yeast 1 biomass to outcompete Yeast 2. Reduce the timeframe, and you don't yield nearly the same character from Yeast 1. To emphasize character of Yeast 1 - consider underpitching at 1/2 typical cell counts - this is to emphasize Yeast 1 character and to slow down Yeast 1 somewhat (yes, it's somewhat counterintuitive). Underpitching ale yeasts and fermenting them warmer than recommended temperature is a great way to emphasize ale yeast ester contribution. Killer Factor Positive and Killer Factor Sensitive yeasts. If Yeast 1 is sensitive, and Yeast 2 produces killer factor - this may be counterproductive. Pitching a sensitive ale yeast, and then a fast fermenting KF+ yeast a few hours later - you might be wasting money. Careful with the high-phenolic POF+ yeasts - those phenols come through loud and clear, screaming all the way through hearts. Might be your thing if you like a "peaty" phenol character. Really fast ferments (4 days) is not going to yield tremendous yeast flavor contribution, so it may be moot. Fast ferments are ideal if the end goal is a cleaner spirit with higher yields, but longer ferments really begin to emphasize character - I think this is especially so with the ale yeasts. Let 'er riiiide. Maturation duration is a killer of unique yeast flavor contribution. The beautiful fruit and florals of ale yeasts do not stand the test of time. You can have an amazing new make, by the 1 year mark it's already lost considerable character, by the 2 year mark, it's almost gone. It becomes a very, very subtle difference. I always wondered why the big distillers said that yeast didn't make a difference. It's not that, it does make a huge difference in new make ... but at 4 years? 8 years? 12 years? Concur with @adamOVD on the Champagne as Yeast 2 - EC1118 is very commonly used to rescue stuck fermentations, as it can withstand the stress of being pitched into a higher alcohol fermentation. FYI - It's killer factor positive.
  5. Agree, what would the workflow even look like? Shuck corn by hand and then manually cut off the kernels? I was always under the impression that the total fermentables from fresh sweet corn were actually considerably lower than dry feed corn.
  6. Keep in mind, the reason why carmine has been one of the most popular colorings for the past 500 years, it has the best stability of any of the natural red coloring agents. The most stable when it comes to light, heat, and oxygen. Safe in food. Anything else is a far, far away second place. Color shift to brown is a real problem, and unless you can move product quickly, and have it consumed quickly (don't we all wish), it's going to become a product perception problem. Stability is going to come down to reducing oxygen exposure. This might mean changing your workflow to ensure you aren't adding oxygen at any stage in the process, it might also mean needing to add stabilizers. You are going to need to get into some hardcore food science: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1541-4337.12244
  7. Bain marie? Can you retrofit steam? Or do you not want to go down that route?
  8. Looks like a weird electropolishing or plating issue.
  9. How much cooling is required to cool 600g mash to pitch temp in 30 minutes? 50-75 tons?
  10. Depends - are you boiling or not? If you are not boiling, your wash will be full of lactobacillus and a number of other bacteria, since grain is microbiologically filthy. The 2 hour runoff is irrelevant compared to the bacteria that will survive mash temps. Considering that most malt distillers don't boil, you probably shouldn't be concerned.
  11. Yeah @Aux Arc answered for me. If you are just starting to get into a rhythm and don't have a regular production schedule, using backset/stillage in your mash is a little bit of a challenge, since you need to keep it around. The spent wash from the pot, after distillation - separated from the spent grain. You shouldn't need pH stabilizer, adjust using your acid of choice along with the backset. Question 3 - Anything malted goes in on the way down, at 150-152f. These grains will easily gel at those temperatures, and that temp range will preserve enzyme function. Glad to see you worked through the challenges, keep truckin.
  12. Discretion of the judge to allow the suit. In situations of illegal behavior, courts generally permit direct suits. Liability limits don’t shield against commiting fraud.
  13. At what point does it become fraud? Lawyer up, sue management not the company.
  14. Not to mention fermentation temperature, distillation style, output proof, and product yield (cut).
  15. You can almost tell the stage of the mash cook by listening to pitch of the eductor. Starts out very loud, higher pitch, but as you hit maximum viscosity of the mash, it gets much deeper, quieter. On the water additions: One Pound of Steam = One Pound of Water One Pound of Steam = 970 BTU 1 BTU = Heat 1 Pound of water by 1 Degree F 1 Gallon Water = 8.3 Pounds Becomes pretty easy to calculate your water addition due to heating.
  16. Don't quite follow you @MDH. Goal is to age longer than we can currently age in 30g, which based on our environmentals, is looking like 30-36 months maximum. Not necessarily minimizing wood, but extending product line aging duration. Switching to ex-bourbon doesn't necessarily make sense for us, since you would be losing the age statement for any time in ex-Bourbon - from a logistics and cost perspective, it would be far easier just to go into new 53. We average 20% evaporation in ~2 years in 30g, which is fairly high. We attribute this to very dry winters, and our barrel storage is in conditioned space (heated, not cooled). Temperature ranges for us are around 55f-100f - Warm/dry winters and hot/humid summers. Proof over the 2 years is typically flat to slightly increasing, but we do swell barrels with water which is going to drop the proof initially. It sounds easy, just lay down a ton of 53g - however the issue is that a gap in product availability is a financial killer - so that's not a possibility, but the opposite situation, a long overlap period - would result in a situation where it would be difficult to move the younger product.
  17. Was $85 for carbon steel, 3/4” - 4 years ago.
  18. Brass is way too soft for a steam jet. My cast version looks fine after hundreds and hundreds of runs.
  19. Stainless one? I’m running the cast one, it was like $200 or $300.
  20. That pump head with the overpressure bypass (to protect the pump) sells for well over $1000. Looking at a pump curve, using a viscosity of 7500 (molasses between 5000 and 10000) - looks like you can do about 12-18 gallons per minute at 600-1000rpm. Just a quick estimate of motor, probably 1.5-2hp.
  21. Can you fabricate? Here is a Desmi pump head they sell for sugar and molasses manufacture: https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fulk%2Fitm%2F192590239749 It’s dirt cheap, but you need a base, motor, gear reduction, and frequency drive.
  22. Yeah don’t bother trying to find a sanitary pump that’ll deal with it. We have some big Viking S2 lobe pumps and they struggle unless you run them very very slow.
  23. Fair enough. https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5731e51d8a65e244fd560a92/t/577c1c5e15d5db726ef26bca/1467751519284/Brochure+2835_R1.pdf You might want to consider electric heat tracer line to heat the pipelines and pump head. There are lots of similar gear pumps that will work.
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