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Old 12-21-2012, 12:27 PM   #721
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Have you got that right though. Distilling would be the evaporating, condensing and collection of the ethanol; not the concentrating of the initial liquor. But I guess if they struggle with your explaination their heads might explode with the actual methodology of distilling
If it were only the ethanol that is evaporated, condensed, collected and the initial liquor has no other influence, where are the flavours in whisky and Brandy from?
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Old 12-21-2012, 12:37 PM   #722
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If it were only the ethanol that is evaporated, condensed, collected and the initial liquor has no other influence, where are the flavours in whisky and Brandy from?
The attempt is to collect more ethanol than anything, but tons of other compounds get carried in through the process, which imparts flavor. Distilleries try very hard to reduce these, so just enough flavor is imparted. Other flavors are from the wood of the cask or the atmosphere in the cask as the "Angel's share" evaporates through the barrel walls. Barrels are not oxygen barriers so a small amount of air makes its way through the walls into the barrel and this will also effect the flavor over the years of aging.
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Old 12-21-2012, 12:45 PM   #723
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One of my co-workers used to frequent a restaurant that would serve ANY beer on their menu in a 22 ounce frosted mug. He would get Guinness every time. I told him that wasn't the proper way to serve a stout, and he said "most places probably only serve it by the pint because it's so strong"........I told him it only had about .07% more alcohol than Coors Light, and he was downright offended! He refused to believe me. I showed him a comparison chart on the web on my phone, and it was like I told him there was no Santa Claus. I don't get to see him as much these days, but I've heard he's quit drinking. I doubt our discussion had anything to do with it, though.

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Old 12-21-2012, 12:45 PM   #724
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Originally Posted by cluckk View Post
The attempt is to collect more ethanol than anything, but tons of other compounds get carried in through the process, which imparts flavor. Distilleries try very hard to reduce these, so just enough flavor is imparted. Other flavors are from the wood of the cask or the atmosphere in the cask as the "Angel's share" evaporates through the barrel walls. Barrels are not oxygen barriers so a small amount of air makes its way through the walls into the barrel and this will also effect the flavor over the years of aging.
OK, which means that it's not just ethanol that's gleaned from distillation.There's an apparent flavour difference between single malts, blended malts, cane and Fruit sugar derived distillates that isn't only attributable to the aging environment.
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Old 12-21-2012, 03:22 PM   #725
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Yes, but the post of mattd2 that you initially responded too was actually trying to correct an earlier error which said distillation was the "concentrating" of the fermented liquor. They are actually two very different processes--concentrating and distilling. In concentrating one is removing water to make what is left stronger. One way of doing this is how I just finished making some Apple Jack. Freeze hard cider and then remove the water which freezes at a much higher temperature than the alcohol and other compounds (the process is called "Jacking"). It concentrates the flavors and alcohol--the final product is everything but the water. In distilling you are not removing water, but the ethanol and in the process some other elements go along with it. The water and most of the flavor producing elements are left behind and discarded. The only difference between a single malt and a blended malt is that a single has only those flavors of a single mash, while a blended brings together several to try to make a consistent profile from several mashes. Cane and fruit sugars are different because they each have differences in flavor caused by the elements that get carried along in the process of distillation. You are being too literal when you think he was saying the effort was to evaporate and condense only the ethanol, as if nothing else was desired but pure ethanol. Ethanol is the focus, while the other elements are happy byproducts of the process.

BTW what is distilled out and how much can be controlled by the temperature in the evaporator. A form of distillation is used for the production of essential oils, the conversion of crude oil to it's products and bio-diesel.

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Old 12-21-2012, 03:26 PM   #726
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Originally Posted by craigger64 View Post
One of my co-workers used to frequent a restaurant that would serve ANY beer on their menu in a 22 ounce frosted mug. He would get Guinness every time. I told him that wasn't the proper way to serve a stout, and he said "most places probably only serve it by the pint because it's so strong"........I told him it only had about .07% more alcohol than Coors Light, and he was downright offended! He refused to believe me. I showed him a comparison chart on the web on my phone, and it was like I told him there was no Santa Claus. I don't get to see him as much these days, but I've heard he's quit drinking. I doubt our discussion had anything to do with it, though.
Recently someone asked me to recommend a beer that had lots of flavor but was still very lite. I recommended Guinness and the guy looked at me like I had a third hand growing out of my forehead.
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Old 12-21-2012, 03:48 PM   #727
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Recently someone asked me to recommend a beer that had lots of flavor but was still very lite. I recommended Guinness and the guy looked at me like I had a third hand growing out of my forehead.
Because it has no flavor. I would have looked at you that way, too.
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Old 12-21-2012, 04:01 PM   #728
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Also,the distilate can be distilled more times to get the ABV up. The more times it's distilled,the higher proof or at least purity you get. Like vodka for instance. My favorite is called Kutskova from Moscow. It's distilled 5 times & is almost like drinking smooth water. Good stuff,but hard to find.
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Old 12-21-2012, 04:13 PM   #729
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All this distilling talk isn't very funny. That makes me sad.

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Old 12-21-2012, 04:49 PM   #730
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All this distilling talk isn't very funny. That makes me sad.
True but at least they're not talking economic theories.

Now there's an idea for a new thread..."beer tangents - just how off topic can you get?"
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