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johnrobben

What can I legally add to Whiskey

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Hi,

I am just looking for some clarification on additives to whiskey. Can you legally add things like Vanilla beans, coriander, or other plants and herbd to a whiskey mash or barrel without having to call it "flavored whiskey" ?

thanks!

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Actually, yes you can, you just have to ensure that the flavoring/coloring additive is less than 2.5% of your finished product. There is a list of options at the bottom of chapter 7. Flavored whisky is one of those. If you are using the herbs as a flavoring you do not have to disclose on the label, if you are using it as a coloring however you do.

Note: all additives have to be considered harmless in order to not have to be declared on the label. Most herbs are classified as harmless by the FDA. There is also a list of what is considered harmless in chapter 7.

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Indeed, my suggestion though is to double check by contacting the TTB, just to ensure that you don't waste a lot of time and money. I intend to release a range of herbally flavored white whiskies and brandies in the next couple years.

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I just ran across some Straight Bourbon Whiskey, that is obviously flavored with Cherry and Chocolate. How is that possible , and still carry the "straight Bourbon Label". My read on the BAM seems to indicate it isn't permitted ?

Anyone Know for sure ?

thanks

Roger

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I just ran across some Straight Bourbon Whiskey, that is obviously flavored with Cherry and Chocolate. How is that possible , and still carry the "straight Bourbon Label". My read on the BAM seems to indicate it isn't permitted ?

The TTB has interpreted that once you make Straight Bourbon Whiskey, you can't unmake it. (I don't agree with that, but that's they way they see it) So you will see Straight Bourbon whiskey with natural cherry flavors as approved label. However the class type is no longer 101, it's 641.

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Speaking of Bourbon, I picked up a bottle of yours Kristian. Delicious! I'm jealous ;)

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Actually, yes you can, you just have to ensure that the flavoring/coloring additive is less than 2.5% of your finished product. There is a list of options at the bottom of chapter 7. Flavored whisky is one of those. If you are using the herbs as a flavoring you do not have to disclose on the label, if you are using it as a coloring however you do.

Note: all additives have to be considered harmless in order to not have to be declared on the label. Most herbs are classified as harmless by the FDA. There is also a list of what is considered harmless in chapter 7.

I have read this section a few times now..

Can anyone confirm they are reading this the same as me, and that one would be allowed to add 2.5% sugar (or even 2.5% sherry) to a brandy without changing the type or disclosing that on the label.. ?

Additionally my understanding is that sugar could be added to vodka up to 2.5%, but the "QUALIFICATION" column in chapter 7 indicates it can only be 0.2% sugar and 0.1% citric acid.

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The TTB has interpreted that once you make Straight Bourbon Whiskey, you can't unmake it. (I don't agree with that, but that's they way they see it) So you will see Straight Bourbon whiskey with natural cherry flavors as approved label. However the class type is no longer 101, it's 641.

For reference: https://www.ttbonline.gov/colasonline/lookupProductClassTypeCode.do?action=search&display=all#search_results

Are you arguing that it "should be" 641 but its not, or are you saying that it is submitted and accepted as type 641 "whiskey specialty" but still says "Straight Bourbon Whiskey" on the label?

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Does a TTB formula have to be submitted anytime a flavor is added to whisky? For example if I added honey or made a spiced whisky would I need to submit a formula?

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