In this step we "clean" the raw product (the "wash") by removing unwanted components. We heat up the wash and let the resulting steam pass through a column of various heights and condense on the other end where it is collected. Lower boiling compounds are more volatile than higher boiling ones and some don't evaporate at all and stay behind. An initial stripping run is followed by a spirit run which gives us the starting material for the next and final step.
One has to give it time for all the flavors to develop and come together to create the final product. A lot of chemistry and physics is happening in this last step. Oxidations, condensations, hydrolysis and other reactions all give rise to an even more complex mixture of molecules which create the final flavor profile of the spirit. Throughout, we control the temperature and let some of the less favorable compounds escape. For more information, click .
Mashing is the process of combining a mix of milled grain (the "mash bill") with water (the "liquor") and heating this mixture, pausing at specific temperatures to allow enzymes convert starches into single sugar molecules.
Our goal is to make alcohol and the starting material for that is sugar. So, if we use grain, we first have convert the starch into sugar. The initial step for that is "malting". This develops the enzymes required to convert the grain's starches into sugars and proteins into molecules that can be used by yeast during fermentation. We source our malted grains from local producers, people we know personally and who share our passion for quality.
With the starches converted into sugars, we add a specific yeast to the mash and let them convert the sugars into ethanol, other alcohols and congeners. The type of yeast used and the condition such as temperature and oxygen content of the mash determines the outcome and the quality of the final product.