43318Re: Harry (and others)- what is your current malt whisky wash recipe
- Aug 10, 2008Don't you hate it when you have a great reply ready to send and you
hit the wrong key and lose it.
Here goes on the second edition. I hpoe it is as erudite as the first.
I too commence the whisky journey after Harry published
the "Glenmorangie" papers a couple of years ago. It's been a long and
interesting journey and I must admit I have enjoyed all of the
results, some more than others.
Along the way it became very apparent that using the best ingredients
and distilling skill are definitely not the only things required to
make good whisky. Admittedly my skills have developed along the way
but I still have a small amount of my original whisky left and it's
not bad (Aussie slang). My notes tell me it wasn't real good at the
time as new make but 2 years down the track it's "very interesting".
Where am I going with this, well from my experience and research time
and oak really do make the differnce. Certain authorites cite oak as
contributing up to 60% of the flavours of whisky.
Over the period I have been making whisky I have been experimenting
with differing oak chip blends (toasted and untoasted) and have also
used second use oak. It's been an intersting journey so far and my
personal thoughts on the matter are that less oak for longer is
better. It allows the complexities to develop without becoming tannic
or woody while still allowing the malt flavours to impart their
I firmly believe that you have to establish a goal in what you are
trying to achieve and to accomplish that you will need a couple of
bottles of "quality control" handy to keep the taste buds on track.
Just remember that you are not trying to copy someone elses product,
you're making your own whisky to a style.
Somewhere along the way yo are going to to do a taste test and
say "That's getting close!". Here's where you remember Harry's advice
and run for the notes to see what you did differently. You did take
notes didn't you. If you didn't and your memory's like mine "What day
was yesterday?" you have just lost 6 months of resarch.
That being said I'll go back to your original question of what
recipe are we using. For me I use a simple variation on Harry's LME
2 kg peated malt barley (Mashed)
3 kg LME
2 kg Dextrose
Water to 25 litres
25 gm bakers yeast
sachet Safale S-04 yeast
(I have also used Prestige whisky yeast with AG with good results)
This always works out to a initial SG of about 1.080 and ferments to
about 1.004. I double ditill in a pot still using feints in the
spirit run. The spirit run wash I dilute to 27% ABV and make cuts
between about 77% and 62%ABV depending on the taste and nose.
I dilute the new make to 63% and do a three month stepped dilution,
10% per month, down to 43%.
I am currently using a 60/40 mix of toasted and untoasted oak chip at
rate of 5 gm per finished product and waiting at least 6 months.
Patience, Bloody Patience
This is my take and I'm happy with the product so far but as I said
earlier, it's journey that I'm enjoying. If anyone has some hints on
how to improve my method I'd be happy to hear them.
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