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We kept a bottle of Vodka at our Methanol Refineries for the same reason.


John McKee

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  • 1 month later...

It doesn't 'counteract'. It completed with the methanol in your liver and prevents additional toxic by-products of methanol. They guy may well be permanently blind.

Methanol in the ferment mostly comes from methyl groups in the wash, so some fruit brandies (esp fruits with a lot of pectin ,brambles & cherry IIRC) have a lot of methanol in the heads cut. OTOH there is remarkably very little in grain.

So if you are drinking brandy heads, or even select heads off a large batch whiskey you could go blind. OTOH If you left all the heads in a whiskey it wouldn't be a problem (except for flavor/aroma).

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A young Australian died a few days ago from drinking methanol laced cocktails in Bali, there have been about 8 other serious poisonings of Australians in the last year in Bali.

I did a qiuck search and found the following from 2009

--------"An American died on Monday from alleged alcohol poisoning after being treated for two days at Sanglah General Hospital, Bali, raising the total number of fatalities from the deadly alcohol mix to 23 in less than 10 days.

Forty-eight-year-old Rose Johnson was admitted to hospital on Saturday, suffering symptoms of severe poisoning, Sanglah's head of forensics, Ida Bagus Alit, said Monday as quoted by tempointeraktif.com.

Samples of the patient's blood and stomach were sent to the National Police Laboratory in Denpasar.

Alit could had yet confirm the cause of Johnson's death, but said she had shown symptoms typically caused by consuming alcohol mixed with methanol.

Saturday saw the first death of a foreign victim in a spate of fatalities caused by suspected alcohol poisoning in Bali.

Earlier, a resident of Canggu, North Kuta, 59-year-old Briton Alan Colen, was found unconscious after having consumed arak that he had bought from a stall near his house. After being taken to Sanglah Hospital he was later pronounced dead by the attending physician.

The hospital had treated 51 people for alcohol poisoning since last Monday. Of that number, 18 are still undergoing treatment.

Mixing alcohol with other ingredients is not uncommon in Bali. Mixing arak with methanol increases the drink’s alcohol content, in some cases to poisonous levels."

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A young Australian died a few days ago from drinking methanol laced cocktails in Bali, there have been about 8 other serious poisonings of Australians in the last year in Bali.

I did a qiuck search and found the following from 2009

Bali = Bad

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I stumbled across the following.

Of interest was "The simultaneous ingestion of ethanol has no appreciable effect on the proposed "safe" and "toxic" doses when considering exposure over several hours."

Hum Exp Toxicol. 2001 Nov;20(11):563-8.

Defining a tolerable concentration of methanol in alcoholic drinks.

Paine A, Davan AD.

Source

IRG in Toxicology, King's College London, UK.

Abstract

Methanol, a potent toxicant in humans, occurs naturally at a low level in most alcoholic beverages without causing harm. However, illicit drinks made from "industrial methylated spirits" [5% (v/v) methanol:95% (v/v) ethanol] can cause severe and even fatal illness. Since documentation of a no-adverse-effect level for methanol is nonexistent in the literature a key question, from the public health perspective, is what is the maximum concentration of methanol in an alcoholic drink that an adult human could consume without risking toxicity due to its methanol content? Published information about methanol-intoxicated patients is reviewed and combined with findings in studies in volunteers given small doses of methanol, as well as occupational exposure limits (OELs), to indicate a tolerable ("safe") daily dose of methanol in an adult as 2 g and a toxic dose as 8 g. The simultaneous ingestion of ethanol has no appreciable effect on the proposed "safe" and "toxic" doses when considering exposure over several hours. Thus, assuming that an adult consumes 4 x 25-ml standard measures of a drink containing 40% alcohol by volume over a period of 2 h, the maximum tolerable concentration (MTC) of methanol in such a drink would be 2% (v/v) by volume. However, this value only allows a safety factor of 4 to cover variation in the volume consumed and for the effects of malnutrition (i.e., folate deficiency), ill health and other personal factors (i.e., ethnicity). In contrast, the current EU general limit for naturally occurring methanol of 10 g methanol/l ethanol [which equates to 0.4% (v/v) methanol at 40% alcohol] provides a greater margin of safety.

PMID: 11926610 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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  • 7 years later...

@PeteB

I think you mean Arrack - NOT - Arak.

Arak is the world's oldest spirit. It originates from the Levant (i.e. Palestine, Jordan, Syria & Lebanon) and Iraq. It is a triple distilled (via pot still), grape brandy infused with aniseed, and usually aged for at least one year in clay amphorae. Arak is the grandfather of all spirits, as it was the first distilled spirit, because the Arabs of this region created the alembic pot still and successfully distilled wine in 900AD. Through trade, Arak quickly spread throughout the rest of the Mediterranean Basin, and these countries began making their own arak, and each modified the original recipe (i.e. grapes & aniseed) based on available ingredients and culinary preferences. The italians sweetened it and called it Sambuca; the French aged it Oak and called it Pastis, the Greeks added additional herbs and spices and called it Ouzo (and Tsipouro in Cyprus); the Tunisians made it from figs and called it Boukha; the Moroccans made it from Dates and called it Mahia. All of these are similar anise-flavored spirits, all of which are direct descendants of Arak.

Arrack is a completely different beast though. As Arak was the first spirit that many civilizations ever encountered, the word "Arak" became synonymous in these countries with "Distilled Spirits", and in terms of ingredients, methods, and flavor they are too dissimilar from Arak, and cannot fall in the same category of drinks. Arrack is a term used throughout the Far East for a variety of unrelated spirits. 

For more on the little-known history of Arak, checkout this article:

www.muaddi.com/arak-muaddi-heritage-in-every-glass

To see how traditional Arak is made, checkout this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OULUs5kMDc

Cheers!

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