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Juniper

Just as juniper trees stay the test of time and can live to be hundreds of years old, juniper berries have been an enduring flavor in the repertoire of distillers through the centuries. Liquids present challenges to archaeologists, as they...

How Species and Terroir of Oak Affect Flavor

Oak first appeared on earth a little over 65 million years ago. Today, oak trees grow to maturity in the temperate zones, but many of the species are shrubs and quite unsuited to barrel production. There are more than...

Grains Are Grapes

American whiskey and, in fact, most American spirits of any type, are made from a combination of cereal grains. Regardless of their origin, however, all of these grains and even most fruits grown for use in beverage alcohol share...

One-Shot vs. Concentrate or Concentrating on Gin with a Single-Shot

There are many different ways to create gin, even before you switch on the still. Even after the distillate is produced, a whole range of different decisions and options exist. A simple way to produce gin is to put botanicals...

Slow Distillation

Being an aficionado of the Slow Food Movement since the beginning, I would like to add another antidote to the tyranny of the fast food industry and the frenzied pace of modern culture. Slow Distillation By using ancestral methods of distillation,...

Hot & Dirty

Glorious spirits come from hot and dirty fermentations. Boring spirits come from cold and sterilized environments. But unsellable, horrible products also come from hot and dirty fermentations. Like so many things in life, knowing how hot and dirty to...

Temperature and Maturation

Temperature is a critically important factor at every step of a distiller’s craft. Its affect on grains begins with the sun’s energy shining on the growing crops, and continues through the mash temperature of the malt. In fermentation, temperature...

Bitters

Young distilleries need all the help they can get when it comes to getting their brand out and in front of customers. Most people involved in this industry know it’s a tough game to get into. Issues of limited...

The Ins & Outs of Distilling from Beer

Whiskey is famously made by distilling beer, but any distiller will tell you that the “beer” that goes into the still bears little resemblance to the commercial stuff you sip on game day. While it won’t kill ya, those...

What the Heck Is Fast Fourier Molecular Rotation Spectroscopy? 

The Distilling Research Grant (distillingresearch.org) Advisory Committee recently funded research into “A Novel Real Time Quantitative Analytical Spectroscopy Technique for Analyzing All the Congeners Emerging from a Distillation Process” by Robin Felder, Ph.D. If you don’t have a doctorate in chemistry, you may be...