Bad batch, thinking about distilling... - Home Brew Forums
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Old 08-31-2006, 06:16 PM   #1
Mike-H
 
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Has anyone ever distilled beer? I am thinking I can make an interesting alchohol by distilling my beer. If anyone has ever done this I would like to hear your results.

 
Old 08-31-2006, 06:26 PM   #2
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Some types of whiskey are just distilled beer, minus the hops. They also keep the grains in the mash throughout the entire initial boil, fermentation and the boil for distillation. The collected runnings are then filtered and aged in oak barrels. It is the aging process that really gives whiskey its character. Which it is why it so difficult for home distillers to duplicate commercial spirits, not to mention that it is completely illegal in the United States to distill spirits for use as a beverage without a license.

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Old 08-31-2006, 06:27 PM   #3
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The ATF's got some great information on distilling alcohol. Give them a quick call and they'll answer all your questions. Just give them your name and address, and I'm sure they'll send a bunch of guys right over to help you out.

Distilling is illegal in the United States (unless registered/licensed/taxpaying), just as an FYI.
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Old 08-31-2006, 06:34 PM   #4
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jackle,

As the bird notes, technically, distilling is illegal. But I've heard you can get a stovetop still that poses very little danger to anyone, and unless you friggin advertise it, the chances of the Authoritaws finding out about it approach zero.

Yes, beer is distilled. Some of the best liquor I've ever had was some stuff that Castle Eggenberg made. They took their world-famous Samichlaus (14%) and their Urbock 23 (9%), and distilled them. They ended up completely clear, and both of them had unbelievably distinct chocolate characteristics. F'n delicious!

But, ahem, yeah, it's illegal. And we wouldn't want to do anything illegal, would we? I mean, the government is just looking out for our best interests, after all. That's why marijuana is illegal, cuz it's bad, mmkay?
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Old 08-31-2006, 07:05 PM   #5
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Ok, I agree with you it is illegal, however, I did a "science" experiment on my beer and produced pretty pure alchohol within 10 minutes (between my first post and this post) using some "stuff around the kitchen". Here are my results....

I ended up with nearly completely clear liquor.
I took a small taste and dumped it out, it didnt taste quite like whiskey to me, I was also hoping for some body to it, but it looked more like vodka or rubbing alchohol.
I probably wont be doing this again as i'm scared to drink it


If you too wish to do a "science" experiment really simple and safe it can be done like this, WARNING, to not do this for anything else than for scientific purposes. Dispose of the results after you are done!

1 Boiling pot
1 Pint of your brew
1 Kitchen Wok or other curvatured metal thing that can sit atop the boiling pot
1 Tray ice cubes
3 cups of water
1 stove burner
1 Cofee Mug
1 Golf ball

1. Pour beer into boiling pot
2. Place golf ball in cofee mug
3. Put cofee mug in the center of the boiling pot
4. Put ice cubes in wok
5. put water in wok
6. place wok on top of boiling pot
7. boil on low-medium, lift wok every minute or so to check status
8. When you have a thin layer of clear liquid in the cofee cup, stop, this is only an experiment.
9. Taste clear liquid, throw materials away.

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Old 08-31-2006, 07:51 PM   #6
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Is the golf ball just a weight, or does it add certain flavor characteristics?

What about the stories you hear of people going blind from "bathtub gin?" What causes that?

 
Old 08-31-2006, 07:53 PM   #7
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lol, it is just a weight to keep the cofee cup from moving around

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean
Is the golf ball just a weight, or does it add certain flavor characteristics?

What about the stories you hear of people going blind from "bathtub gin?" What causes that?

 
Old 08-31-2006, 08:00 PM   #8
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Bathtub Gin is when people mix stuff from the hardware store instead of grain alchohol. Methyl alchohol is the bad stuff that you dont want. Back in history, people would mix whatever they could to make alchohol, they indeed mixed methyl instead of grain. Although your beer contains trace amounts of methyl, it is made of grain. There is small concern that the initial alchohol will be methyl alchohol as it is the first to boil, SO, if you are doing this to a whole keg of beer and you are drinking the first shot, it may indeed be mostly methyl. As the rest of the alchohol is distilled, you dilute the methyl.

Simply put, you are not drinking anything that is not already in your SINGLE GLASS OF BEER. You are not adding chemicals, nor are you causing any chemical reaction. Your only concern would be if you did this on a LARGE scale, you would not want to drink the initial droppings as it is likely to be undiluted Methyl.

 
Old 08-31-2006, 09:06 PM   #9
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http://www.amazingstill.com/

The guys at Pelican were planning on doing some whiskey, but I haven't been back there for a while.
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Old 08-31-2006, 11:59 PM   #10
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as previously stated illegal in north america use at you own risk
but good info here www.homedistiller.org
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