Don't forget the VITAMINS!
So. This now concludes SCD's vodka run 2018. I made several gallons, maybe close to 5 gallons in 6 weeks. It really helped me get through the holidays while keeping my brown spirits upstairs in the attic. I really like this recipe, and after running 250+ gallons of this wash, I have a couple suggestions for people getting into this recipe.
#1) As the intro states, do NOT forget the vitamins.
On my last batch, I laid everything down like I normally do. It was late, and even though I pulled the vitamins out and put them on the counter, I completely forgot and pitched the yeast, then went to bed. When I woke up in the morning, the entire lower level was filled with the aroma of sulfur. That rotten egg smell is unmistakable, and as soon as I smelt it, I realized I had broken rule #1.
I think in essence, I recreated a turbo. It's the only thing that would explain such stress on the yeast in 12 hours. Makes me want to have someone add vitamins to turbo and see if that fixes it.
Anyways, I immediately pitched the vitamins. At this point, it seemed like it helped stop the continued production of sulfur, but it was already in the wash. So, thankfully I'm always reading and anyway had an idea. Later that night I threw a 2 ft stick of copper in the (2) 30 gallon washes. Over the next day or so it seemed to absorb the sulfur, and it left the wash. In the end the distillate came out ok, but just not as crisp clear as all the other ones. There was a slight after taste during cuts. But it seemed to disappear after a day or 2 also. In the end it was good.
#2 Don't try to reuse the yeast bed. I don't know why this happened, but whenever I tried to use the previous yeast, that ferment finished .01 higher than the previous batch. The original batch ended at .091. Then next batch ended at 1.001. The next one ended at 1.011. Weirdest thing. As soon as I cleaned out the bed and pitched fresh yeast, bam right back to .091 or so.
The only thing that I can think of is that maybe left over nutrients are settling in the yeast bed and building up unhealthy conditions. I don't know. I'm not the science guy. I just know my results. Just take my observations. Or don't.
Either way, thanks shady. Here's to your health and happiness in 2019.
Now on to a couple months of rum. Going to pick up 30 gallons of molasses next week
. Next winter will be rumlishious