Have just come across some info re Rum that may be of interest ...
Cane sugar is only about 12-16 % w/w sugar, so the alcohol content of the
fermented material is usually around 6-8% (cf. 10-13% from molasses) Using
molasses can end up depositing scale etc inside stills if the amount of
dissolved salts is high.
Heavy contamination of bacteria and yeasts (from crushing process) causes it
to ferment spontaneously and very rapidly. These may also result in more of
the cogeners such as acids and esters for taste, if you're after dark rums,
but may need controlling if you're after a light rum. To control them you'd
be after dropping the pH during fermentation to around 5.5, and also using
heaps of yeast (so as to give it a fighting chance to exert its own
Dark rums usually from double pot distillation (sometimes triple), whereas
light rums more often from a continuous distillation.
Can do both together.. Some guy Arroyo back in 1948 suggests doing first a
continuous distilling in a 5 plated column (e.g. you'd probably get away
with a poor performing reflux still), then putting the output of that into a
pot still. He then splits up the fractions out of the pot still, and
recombines them ...
* First fraction - between 69-72 C at 91% - approx. 5% total
distillate, unpleasant aldehydes, organic acids and esters. Discard.
* Second fraction, 72-77 C at 93-94% - 10% total distillate, contains
ethanol with appreciable amounts of aldehydes and esters.
* Third fraction, at 78C, 95.5%, largest in volume at 55-60% ,mostly
ethanol with very small amounts of congeners
* Fourth fraction at 78.5-85 o C , 90%, most of the higher alcohol's
* Fifth and final fraction at of 85-90 o C at 25-30% - highest
boiling point esters and aldehydes
Mix the fractions together as ...
Light rum = 25% second, 50% third, 40% fourth & 15% fifth fraction
Dark rum = whams left (except the first fraction - that was all thrown away)
Very little aging in wood required for light rums (some only a couple of
weeks), or not at all. Don't leave on oak for too long or end up with a
- I have no idea where to get Clostridia bacteria, so I just add Indonesian ragi and Chinese jiuqu rice yeasts which are available to me in Chinese grocery stores. These provide wild tropical yeasts and bacteria.
--- In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, "waljaco" <waljaco@...> wrote:
> Beverages, AH Varnam & JM Sutherland
> Rum, pages 418-421 (free!)