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Distilling (PowerPoint download)

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Distilling (PowerPoint download) Powered By Docstoc

                    Philip Meaden
• Part 1: Malting, Mashing and Fermentation
• Part 2: Distillation of Malt Spirit
• Part 3: Distillation of Grain Spirit
• Part 4: Distilled Beverages other than Scotch Whisky
• Part 5: Flavour and Maturation
• Part 6: Cooperage
• Part 7: Blending and Packaging
Distilled Beverages Other Than Scotch Whisky

 • Congeneric spirits
    – whisky/whiskey, brandy (including fruit brandies),
      dark rum

 • Non-congeneric (neutral or light) spirits
    – vodka, gin, light rum

 • Liqueurs and speciality products (LSPs)
    – non-generic products (most recently, cream
      liqueurs, pre-mixed cocktails and alcopops)

Scotch malt whisky     Uses malted barley; batch

Scotch grain whisky    Uses malted barley plus unmalted
                       cereal; continuous distillation

Irish whiskey          Malt whiskey produced by triple
                       pot distillation; stills are larger
                       than those used in Scotland
Canadian whisky        Rye is a major source of grain;
                       exogenous enzymes may be
                       used in mashing
         Irish Whiskey: Triple Distillation

           Wash still

Strong low wines Weak low wines

                        Low wines still             feints
                  Strong feints

                           Spirit still
                                          Spirit (89-92% abv)
                                          Tails (feints)
                     Canadian Whisky

• Mashing may be carried out using malt and/or microbial
  enzymes (e.g. thermostable -amylase from Bacillus
• Enzymes may also be added at the fermentation stage
  (e.g., fungal glucoamylase), especially if malt was not
  used during mashing
• Lactic acid bacteria are used together with the yeast in
  fermentation (lactic acid bacteria may provide growth
  factors for the yeast)
• Continuous distillation (including extractive distillation) is
  used in rye spirit production
Canadian Whisky: Continuous Distillation
                American Whiskies

Bourbon, rye, wheat,   At least 51% corn, rye, wheat,
malt whiskey           malted barley, respectively;
                       distilled at not more than 80% abv;
                       new oak casks (with charring) used
                       for maturation (minimum of two

Corn whiskey           At least 80% corn; distilled not
                       more than 80% abv; matured in
                       new (uncharred) or used casks
                       (minimum of two years)
Bourbon Whiskey Distillation System
         American Whiskies (continued)

Light whiskey       Distilled at 80-95% abv; matured in
                    used casks (minimum of two

Tennessee whiskey   As for other American whiskies,
                    but must be produced in
                    Tennessee; filtration through
                    maple charcoal is also used to
                    produce a “cleaner” spirit
             Other Congeneric Spirits

Brandy              Distilled from fermented grape
Fruit brandies      Distilled from fermented fruit juice
                    (e.g., Calvados from fermented
                    apple juice)
Rum                 Distilled from fermented sugar
                    cane juice or molasses
Tequila             Uses the blue agave plant as the
                    major or only source of
                    fermentable carbohydrate

• Produced in France in a region north-east of the
  Gironde and north of the Dordogne rivers
• Specific grape varieties are grown for Cognac
   – Ugni blanc (95% of total) – productive, gives a
     spirit with floral aroma
   – Colombard – productive, spirit has heavy, sharp
   – Folle Blanche – gives a rich, very aromatic spirit,
     but vines are prone to fungal disease
   – certain other varieties permitted to a maximum of
                Cognac (continued)

• Fermentation takes place using naturally-occurring
  yeasts (present on the grapes)
• Double distillation process, using direct firing
   – first distillation produces a brouillis (distillate) of
     27 to 30% abv
   – second distillation or bonne chauffe: the heads (1
     to 2% of total) are discarded, the tails are
• Blending is carried out as maturation proceeds to
  provide consistency

  Uses sugar cane juice or molasses as a feedstock:
• Cane juice (12-16% sugar) is easy to use (requires no
  processing), gives a cleaner distillation than molasses but
  very prone to microbial contamination and only available
  during the cane harvest
• Molasses stores reasonably well, contains a more
  concentrated sugar solution (up to 80%), and provides
  greater character to the distilled product; requires
  clarification and dilution prior to fermentation
          Distillation: Dark and Light Rum

• Dark rum production uses batch distillation, either as a
  double or triple process; large scale production includes a
  combined batch and column still
• Light rum production uses continuous distillation with a
  Barbet still and additional columns for production of a
  highly rectified spirit
• Maturation is variable
  – little or none for light rums (may also be treated with
    activated charcoal)
  – five years or more for heavy rums
Batch Distillation in the Production of Dark Rum
Batch and Column Still for Production of Dark
                     The Barbet Still

• Widely used in the production of neutral and light spirits in
  Europe and South America
• Uses a heads removal section above the stripping column
  to remove some of the more volatile components before
  they reach the rectifying column
• The heads removal section prevents CO2 build-up in the
  rectifier and provides better control of some congener
  levels in the rectifying column
• Disadvantage of the Barbet system is that alcohol losses
  are higher (compared to Coffey still)
The Barbet Still
Continuous Distillation for Production of Light Rum

• Uses neutral spirit; careful handling and storage is
  necessary to avoid taints; activated charcoal is used to
  remove trace amounts of congeners
• International brands are essentially flavourless; others
  may be lightly flavoured with fruits or other botanicals
  (bison grass, pepper, honey)
• Fermentation feedstock is usually a cereal; amylolytic
  enzymes are supplied by malted barley or exogenously
• Non-cereal fermentation feedstocks (potatoes, sugar beet,
  sugar cane juice, molasses, whey) may be permitted in
  some countries
Three Column System for Neutral Spirit Production

• Uses neutral spirit from continuous distillation
• Flavoured with botanicals, chiefly juniper berries
  (Juniperis communis) but also angelica root, coriander
  seeds, lemon peel, etc.
• “Distilled” gin produced by batch distillation (45-60% abv)
  with botanicals; heads and tails fractions are recycled
  through a rectifying column before returning to the gin still
• “Compound” gin uses essences or flavourings that are
  added directly to the neutral spirit
          Liqueur and Specialty Products

• Many brands, versatile, extremely varied, with broad
• Sales tend to be seasonal (mainly November-December)
• Dominated by a handful of global brands (e.g., Bailey’s
  Original Irish Cream, Malibu, Kahlúa, Southern Comfort)
• Life cycle can be very short (perhaps only a few years)
• New brands require a “unique selling proposition” for
• Innovative design and packaging are important
                Production of Liqueurs

• In Europe and the USA, liqueurs are now defined by law
• Spirit base (either neutral or congeneric) must be the
  product of fermentation
• Usually contain 20-60% (v/v) ethanol (minimum of 15% in
• In Europe, must contain a minimum sugar content of 10%,
  (w/v); sucrose is generally used because of greater
• Additives must be of “agricultural origin”, flavourings must
  be “natural”

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