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Can You Distill Beer

Can You Distill Beer

Is it Possible to Distill Beer?

Yes, you can distill beer. However, note that doing so is illegal in a number of places without a license. Distillation is a process that involves heating a liquid to create vapor, which is then cooled and condensed back into a liquid. This process can be used to purify and concentrate the alcohol and is often used to make spirits such as whiskey, rum, and vodka.

For those of you making your beer or wine with kits, as well as making your distillate spirits without using grains, fermentation will be step one of your process. This is a tough question to answer, as the distillation of spirits is a process, much like making beer or wine is a process, and they are both made of multiple steps. At the same time, there are unique steps in both processes, which are unique to making beer, making wine, or distilling spirits. To recap, the typical all-grain brewer will take approximately 5 steps to craft his or her beer (mash, levain, boil, ferment, bottle), while the all-grain distiller will take just 3 steps (mash, ferment, distill).

Aside from all-grain whiskeys (or, for that matter, all-grain vodkas), fermentation would really be step 1 of most distilled recipes. Anyone who has made beer has a leg up on this, so if you are comfortable brewing at home, distilling grain at home for whiskey is going to be easy. If you are looking to distill homebrew to whiskey, you are going to have to make some solid ales or stouts.

Distilling beer is done in order to turn it into whiskey, however, distilling beer at home requires an enormous amount of equipment, as well as the fact that the practice is considered illegal. The well-known beer distilling process is incredibly complicated, and the spirit is not really much like the commercial spirits that you will drink on game days. In addition to stirring, straining your mash through a colander is essential for completing the distillation process at home successfully.

Find out what happened when you distill beer

Distilling beer into whiskey is not going to remedy obvious flaws and make great whiskey, but it is ideal for a nice brew that is just a little past its prime, plus it requires space in your keg, bottles, or refrigerator or kegerator. There seems to be a stigma around distilling, which is either that it is dangerous or that it is really hard, but really, it is not that much harder than making beer. Whether you are distilling alcohol, or distilling water, oil, or perfume, alcohol distillation is basically the same concept.

Most Logical ChoiceSince both beverages are frequently created from the exact grain, distilling beer into whiskey is the most logical choice.
Some Recent Distillates Because beer contains unfermentable carbohydrates that make it appealing, distilling beer also results in a gritty sweetness that is absent from whiskey.
What does beer distill into?

Wine is not distilled because it contains sugars and other impurities which make it impossible for the distillation process to function correctly. Beer and wine, which are not distilled, are limited to maximum ABVs of around 20%, as most yeast cannot metabolize once alcohol is over that concentration; consequently, fermentation stops at this point.

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Distillation describes the process by which that 15 percent alcohol is separated from the remaining liquid. Once the 1- or so is at peak olfaction, Copperworks pumps it into the still and distills it, to extract both the malt and alcohol flavors.

I would suggest taking off the stuff that comes off of the stills during the one-time distillation, and running it through the stills the second time. There are really two times when you use ingredients to flavour a spirit — once during the fermentation process, and then again in the distillation. The ingredients that flavor the spirit are actually used twice – while making beer, and prior to the distillation of the final product.

Beer is made by adding the hops, then running syrup through the grains, adding yeast after the wort is cleared. If you were to distill hops out of a beer, you would get a completely different product.

It is best to use low-hops beers such as stouts, porters, lagers, wheats, etc., to avoid giving off any of the hop characteristics. You might think that I am nuts, and you might be right, but if you keep your temperatures relatively low (I am not going to go into technical aspects of distilling now), you will collect higher levels of ethanol at lower levels of the beers flavors, and therefore the hops.

Beer is generally made with the same grains that whiskey is made from, so it makes sense to distil the two together (although some of the more recent distillers are more novel). Copperworks uses brewery yeast instead of distillers yeast, since we are going for the best craft beer flavor, not maximum production. Most homebrew stores carry several types of yeast, and one designed specifically for brewers will provide better flavor and yields than either a bakers yeast (which works) or a brewers yeast (which can be finicky). Whiskey distillers begin by fermenting grains (just as beer brewers do) to release sugars, which the yeast will ultimately convert to alcohol.

For instance, if you are planning on making rum, you would just dilute the molasses and ferment it, the same way making beer from a kit requires that you dilute a jar of malt extract and ferment that. For distilling, I suggest starting off with something already fermented (I used a gallon of Carlo Rossi red wine) and then distilling it to get used to using a still before going through the fermentation process. According to the distilling tradition, you need to employ quite a few different techniques in order to create a whiskey, like malting, distilling, and long-term oak barrel aging. The usage is fairly similar to what craft and homebrewers might do with specialty ales like smokey porters or Rauchbiers, where they smoke the base malts on things like applewood or cherry.

In fact, fermented malt slabs used in distillation are sometimes called distilled ale – not that I want to drink that. The wash going into a whiskey still is sometimes called distillers beer, but that fermented, non-hopped liquid tastes totally different from your favorite IPA. That is because the wash is designed exclusively for the next step in the process, the distillation, not immediate consumption.

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When you are fermenting beer, you are also getting that granular sweetness you cannot get with whisky, perhaps because beer has sugars in it that are unfermentable, which makes beer more desirable. Making whiskey out of beer requires adding unfermentable sugars, and this may be the reason that beer tastes grainy. Distilled spirits such as whiskey are taxed at the highest rates of all spirits, much higher than either beer or wine.

What does beer distill into?

Since both beverages are frequently created from the exact grain, distilling beer into whiskey is the most logical choice, but some recent distillates have been even higher-concept. Because beer contains unfermentable carbohydrates that make it appealing, distilling beer also results in a gritty sweetness that is absent from whiskey.

Is whiskey made out of beer?

Whiskey is really just distilled beer. Although you wouldn’t want to drink it, the fermented mash intended for distillation is occasionally referred to as “distiller’s beer.” However, finished beer may be used to make whiskey. The Charbay Distillery in California has a well-known history of producing whiskey from beer.

Why beer is better than whiskey?

Although beer contains more antioxidants than hard liquor, their total impact is minimal. On the other hand, hard alcohol frequently has no or very little carbs. Even the notion that beer and alcoholic beverages are healthy may be alluring. But it’s a little difficult, just like most nice things in life.