20 years of aging in 6 days

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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby NZChris » Sat Sep 10, 2016 3:35 pm

I don't know that I would claim 20 years, but for someone who is short of drinking likker in the cellar, what I'm doing is worthwhile. Note that I'm not using light, only heat, so I haven't tried the entire protocol yet. That gets more complicated.

It makes a great test for working out how much oak to use when you have a new batch.

Another trial I did was putting some used oak into feints for 6 days at 144F, then distilling it. The feints were 40% straight out of the collection and were pretty nasty. After distilling I had a helluva time deciding on what not to put in the final blend. With help from another distiller, it was decided to put the whole collection in as that got us the best flavor, so there was no cut done apart from the shutdown. No foreshot, no heads, and including all that I thought would be tails. It is now in glass with JD chips and vanilla bean being held 86F.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby shadylane » Sat Sep 10, 2016 3:46 pm

NZChris wrote:I don't know that I would claim 20 years, but for someone who is short of drinking likker in the cellar, what I'm doing is worthwhile.

That's also my opinion from my limited experiments. It appears I can get a year of aging in a couple weeks.
And that first year makes a big difference. :thumbup:
Haven't tried ultrasound or oxygenation yet
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby thumper123 » Fri Oct 07, 2016 12:35 pm

As an old man I'm very interested in quick aging since I don't have all that much time to age either whiskey or myself. I think science needs to weigh in a little more heavily on the subject, and I've tried many of the suggestions on this website - some have been excellent. I think, in the end, that taste is what wins any of the current arguements.

We have a small craft distiller in my area who advertises that his product is aged in small barrels for three years. He admits that the reason for this was to put his product on the market sooner, but he also claims that the bourbon he sells is better for the process. It's pricey to say the least; going for $43.00 for an 375 ml bottle. My son bought me a bottle for my birthday, and I couldn't wait to try it. It was very good, but different from my bourbon firstly because of the grain bill - theirs was 100% corn whereas my is a much more complicated grain bill, and secondly the oak was crazy heavy in the store bought stuff. At this point I brought in my unprejudised tester - someone we all use around here who is known for her sensitve taste buds. She found the oak to be too much in the commercial product as well. She also thought the smoothness was the same between both samples. So I'm thinking that the guy that has the patented process is onto something, but he needs to take a little oak out of the process.

Don't forget, the established distillers have it made because of the laws - the barrel thing works heavily in their favor. If they can maintain that old practice they can hang on to all the bourbon business because the new guy on the block simply can't get into the barrel market. We have three craft distillers in my area who simply can't buy barrels, so they must be content selling gin and vodka. I'll bet the major distillers will pooh hoo any new scientific advances to the end for that very reason. At any rate, age still plays a major part in my whiskey - until something better comes along.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby SaltyStaves » Sat Oct 22, 2016 3:10 pm

I am currently running a batch of UJSSM through the process and it has another 34 hours of heat to go, but it is highly promising (so far).

I have incorporated light treatment right from the beginning. After researching the patent and various papers on preservation against UV damage for museums and the textiles industries etc, I settled on 420nm (as a starting point). That part of the spectrum particularly, is responsible for vanillin extraction. 420nm Actinic fluorescent tubes are commonly used in marine aquariums as they are effective at penetrating the far depths of the tank and allow coral to photosynthesize. This should help them get through coloured distillate, which is something that red and green spectrums struggle with. They are relatively affordable and don't consume huge amounts of power or generate too much heat (which is a problem with close proximity for a hobby sized setup). Using a double fitting light fixture, I can mix and match tubes of different spectrums. But for now, I have two identical 420nm tubes from Zoo Med.

The first thing I wanted to do, was establish if the lighting in isolation, made any tangible difference. After all, if you can't smell and taste something, then its probably not there.
LS were generous enough to qualify their experiment in the patent with the descriptor of "extremely bitter" (in relation to a sample that was only treated with light).

I set up two identical glass jars with the same white dog distillate, two halves of the same piece of white oak (med toast and med char) and placed them equal distance from the light.
One jar was blackened out completely. It was important that they both remained together as the light generates enough heat to hold the distillate at 30C/86F. So testing the two had to take account of every factor that could make a difference and void the experiment.
lighting temp test2.jpg


Based on lux hour measurements, I calculated that I would need 19 hours to reach LS' minimum mentioned in the patent.
I taste tested at 12/24/48 and 72hr intervals.

Immediately, the difference was apparent. Undoubtedly, everyone here has tasted those early first few hours/days of oak tea. The light blocked jar exhibited it, dry and astringent, but the sweetness of the UJ still shone through. The light treated jar however was a completely different animal and I have never experienced it before (or ever want to again). The nose was completely closed. The taste however was more akin to Aloe Vera. It had none of the sweetness of the other jar and the last time I recall tasting anything like it, was when I bit down on an ant when I was a kid. Awful.
After 24 hours, things got worse. The light blocked jar started to exhibit tails with water, but the light treated jar was still horribly bitter Aloe flavoured. Water made it worse.
At 48 hours, things started to converge a little. Both rounded out and tails appeared in the light treated sample and both jars were less extreme in their offensiveness. 72hrs, it was even more so and I could not pick that the light had done anything further beyond 48 hours.

This was not a subtle result. I wanted to qualify that the light did something I could smell and taste. It absolutely did.
It has now been used with distillate that has been held for 48 hours at 65C/149F. I taste tested it and none of that nastiness is there, so either the light was ineffective at penetrating the much darker distillate, or it is behaving in line with what LS mentioned in the patent, which suggests that the bitterness is only in isolation with light treatment.

Further testing will be needed to really qualify the light's effectiveness within the whole process, but it is already far superior to the batch I've had on the same oak for four months.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby NZChris » Sun Oct 23, 2016 12:12 am

That is a very interesting read Salty. Thanks.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby Odin » Sun Oct 23, 2016 1:17 am

Headsy, fruity tastes and esters need oxidation. Early tails like tastes (nutty, root-like) need heat so their interaction is sped up. Agitation will enter oxygen in your product. Heating it up will create more of the tails oriented taste development. Both processes (heating up and agitating) reinforce each other. A warmer product will evaporate at a faster rate. Headsy molecules (low boiling point alcohols) are over represented in the evaporated gases and exposed to more oxygen in their gas phase, prior to falling down / being refluxed. And agitation does not only add more oxygen, to help esterize heads, but also makes the tails oriented molecules meet more often and more vigourously.

My tests taught me that in a week time I can get to something that's maybe comparable to 3 to 5 years. I feel 20 years is over stated. But that's just my opinion.

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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby HDNB » Sun Oct 23, 2016 6:12 pm

Odin wrote:Headsy, fruity tastes and esters need oxidation. Early tails like tastes (nutty, root-like) need heat so their interaction is sped up. Agitation will enter oxygen in your product. Heating it up will create more of the tails oriented taste development. Both processes (heating up and agitating) reinforce each other. A warmer product will evaporate at a faster rate. Headsy molecules (low boiling point alcohols) are over represented in the evaporated gases and exposed to more oxygen in their gas phase, prior to falling down / being refluxed. And agitation does not only add more oxygen, to help esterize heads, but also makes the tails oriented molecules meet more often and more vigourously.

My tests taught me that in a week time I can get to something that's maybe comparable to 3 to 5 years. I feel 20 years is over stated. But that's just my opinion.

Odin.


have you tried O3?
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby Odin » Sun Oct 23, 2016 10:24 pm

I have tried variaous things. I started years ago with heathing a bottle up and letting it breathe. Progressed by putting a fish tank bubbler in. Then moved to ultrasonic aging. Put a fish tank bubbler in that. This got me to 2/3rds of the way. I then understand I needed higher temps: closer to the 60/65 C department instead of the 30 to 35 degrees C I took it to with the US bath. Since I designed a new boiler and agitator and heating system for my professional units, I have progressed to agitation and heating (small article on its way tomorrow, I'll share it here). The boiler is perfect for it, because of its design and control. My results are very close to NZChris's. I go to 60 C for fruit brandy and to 65 C for rum and whiskey. Heat for tailsy tastes / early tails smearing development. I agitate faster on my fruit brandy, because I take a cut with more late heads, because that's where fruity notes are found. More oxigenation to speed up the aging / esterification / ethanolification of heads, especially ethyl acetate.

I have thought a great deal about ultraviolet light. I am sure there may be certain benefits. I have also thought about ozone. I didn't put these into practice, though.

HDNB, when you say O3, you refer to ozone, right? Anyhow, I haven't tested it, because the results I am getting are pretty good. And I don't want to overcomplicate my boilers, since they also still need to be able to mash, ferment and distill. But more insight in ozone and light treatment is definately worth our combined efforts!

Regards, Odin.

Edit for ozone. Ozone is basically unstable oxygen. I can see how that speeds up the heads oriented parts of aging. That one O molecule that's available to react with ethyl acetate, if I am not mistaken. That, and of course by introducing O3 in general you get much more O2 in the drink than when you just push air through it with only 20% oxygen. My current take on it is: it may fasten heads oriented aging. Not sure if it is worth the trouble of adding more equipment to ozonate instead of oxygenate product ...
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby SaltyStaves » Mon Oct 24, 2016 2:30 am

Odin wrote:I have thought a great deal about ultraviolet light.


LS' patent mentions utilising actinic light from 400 through to 1000nm, which is in the visible spectrum.
The ultraviolet spectrum does not seem to be useful for this application because of the poor penetration. Even with a quartz crystal vessel, close proximity and the oak right up against the edge of the glass, UV rays would struggle to get beyond the first few layers of molecules of the oak. As the distillate darkens, its even harder to break through.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby SaltyStaves » Wed Nov 23, 2016 7:09 pm

It has been a month since my batch was run and the majority of the (first bottle) has been consumed.
The result is quite unlike anything I've tried before.The nose is dirty and reminds me of BBQ corn husks (not pleasant). However there are no hints of that on the taste (or any corn for that matter). The flavours are predominantly orange and dark chocolate. Its not fresh fruit though. Its very much baked fruit. These flavours did not reveal themselves until the whole process was complete. It also improved markedly with oxygen as the bottle went down. The dirty earthy nose cleared up almost completely.

I currently have a Jaggery Rum running that has 5 more hours of light treatment to go. It is made up of 2/3 of rum that has been on oak for four months and 1/3 unaged from the same batch. It is being heated at 149F like my UJ.
It was just starting to become drinkable, but adding a 3rd of the unaged distillate, completely rolled back all its progress and was back to being unpleasant. However, after the first 48 hours of heat, it was back to being drinkable again. I'll taste test it again after the light process (before it goes back on the heat again for another 48 hours).

I have also got a batch of UJ that I can split five ways to do five experiments with. Haven't decided exactly what they will be, but at least two will be dedicated to an A - B comparison of light vs no light.
I'd also like to test the upper and lower limits of heat mentioned in the patent (140 - 170F) so that I can have a greater understanding of how these temperatures can change the outcome.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby Odin » Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:24 am

I am achieving very good results with the pre-heating program on my stills. I set the temp at 60 to 65 C (in the boiler) for higher temps to speed up early tails maturation (by recombination of molecules). I set the agitator at high revs (relative) to introduce oxygen and oxidyze/age the late heads part. Since there is a packed column on top with loads of heavy stuff, I don't loose any alcohol to evaporation. Even without cooling to the top of the column on.

Regards, Odin.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby SaltyStaves » Thu Nov 24, 2016 2:54 am

Quick video showing the transition from lighting to heating.
https://youtu.be/4zftDkYy8dc

Its a bit fiddly but I'm getting quicker at the changeovers.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby dstaines » Wed Mar 08, 2017 11:52 am

I have an update of some 2nd-hand information, pertaining to the original direction of this thread (seems to have diverged more in the 'what-else-can-we-try' direction, which is definitely great, but not something I have ever played around with).

Anyway the point is that this guy I know who has regular contact with Bryan Davis, the inventor of the THEA 1 Reactor, told me Davis' company has put the THEA Reactor project on hold except for their own proprietary use. Recall that their intended business model was to lease these units to craft distillers, enabling them to rapidly create interesting products with an "Ultra-aged" flavor profile. I know that several companies took them up on that program, at least as a trial. The reason given to me for the why their program didn't succeed wildly shouldn't surprise anyone here, and it has nothing to do with the reactor or the organoleptic science that supports it:

Distilling delicious spirits takes a lot of practice to do well, and the first stuff you make is probably going to suck.

Basically, none of the "Big Boys", those with qualified master distillers and rigorous quality control processes supporting their brands, were ever going to consider the THEA reactor. They have the resources to age spirits in the traditional way, so if they want to make a premium ultra-aged product they bottle it from their oldest barrels and sell it on the top shelf with a properly impressive age statement. Those who were eager to try it were (for the most part, according to my source) small craft distillers just starting out. In short, they filled the reactor with crap white whiskey, poorly blended, not knowing it was crap, and six days later bottled brown whiskey that tasted like crap but older.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby Jimbo » Wed Mar 08, 2017 1:57 pm

haha, thats a pretty good observation. crap in crap out.

Any process that trys to short change mother nature never had any credibility in this industry to begin with. Even smaller barrels, let alone snake oil and alchemy. Ive seen plenty articles that snickered and laughed at this particular attempt and others to make diamonds from coal.

My opinion is its dangerous to the credibility of 'Craft Spirits'. Some yahoo trys to pawn off his 6 month old shite for 40-50 bucks a bottle and before long no one trusts $40 craft spirits anymore and reverts back to their 'safe' Cracker Barrel well known predictable brand. Not good.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby thecroweater » Wed Mar 08, 2017 7:19 pm

Jimbo wrote:haha, thats a pretty good observation. crap in crap out.

Any process that trys to short change mother nature never had any credibility in this industry to begin with. Even smaller barrels, let alone snake oil and alchemy. Ive seen plenty articles that snickered and laughed at this particular attempt and others to make diamonds from coal.

My opinion is its dangerous to the credibility of 'Craft Spirits'. Some yahoo trys to pawn off his 6 month old shite for 40-50 bucks a bottle and before long no one trusts $40 craft spirits anymore and reverts back to their 'safe' Cracker Barrel well known predictable brand. Not good.

Truth :thumbup:
That said small barrels and temp/humidity control do work but small barrels are not economically viable for large volume. Climate control is used by most medium to large producers, Buffalo trace use it in such away as to considerably raise their ABV while aging. Personally although that makes great economic sense I don't think it makes for a better product IMHO. Small barrels cost almost the same as large ones (maybe more) so if you are going to spend 10 times as much for barreling then ya want to be aiming for the very top of the top self just to break even. As for most of us .
In Australia we don't get any $50 craft whiskey as the starting price is around $100 and climbs rapidly from there so consumer confidence is very important.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby HDNB » Wed Mar 08, 2017 7:27 pm

thecroweater wrote:In Australia we don't get any $50 craft whiskey as the starting price is around $100 and climbs rapidly from there so consumer confidence is very important.


same here, i'd never have got into this if i could buy likker at USA prices. cheapest craft vodka in a store here is 47. most hit 53.
aged craft is 60 plus. Hudson whiskey outta USA is 65 a mickey here. fak.
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby thecroweater » Wed Mar 08, 2017 9:23 pm

:oops: sorry I got a call half way through that post . It should have read "As for most of us these economic considerations are not a concern" .
Most of us are not wanting a product in 8 years but are aiming for something special inside of 6 to 12 months and small volume casking is a tool for that job. Its about surface contact verses ullage etc. The commercial guys need to weigh up outlay cost verses the advantage of faster turnaround versus age marketing If it was viable large scale they'd be doing it and I have noticed some small batch craft distillers do use 50 and 100 ltr kegs.
I'm not sure I'm ready to swallow the reasoning behind the failure of the business plan, yes shit in shit out but most rapid aging is infact rapid flavouring. There is just not a big enough market for oak tea whiskey I suspect. Who knows they can get ppl to buy Flieschmanns whiskey sure they can find someone to buy any shit with the right marketing :roll:
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby Fills Jars Slowly » Wed Oct 18, 2017 7:59 am

The most recent ADI newsletter had a blurb and posted a link to the story that Jim Murray has given a peated whisky aged for 6 days using this process a score of 94 in the 2018 Whisky Bible.

Now, we all know that what one guy with a big name says doesn't necessarily mean jack squat about whether a drink is really all that or not. However, this will make waves. It seems as big in the world of whisky as the California wines winning the blind taste tests in France all those years back. Is Jim Murray off his rocker? I dunno. Is he in the hip pocket of the craft distilling movement? I dunno. Is this 6 day old stuff really just as good (94 points worth on the Murray scale) as some of the better scotch whiskies of the world? I dunno.

I have not read all posts in this thread so this link may already be posted, but here is the link to the white papers that Lost Spirits have published concerning their methods: https://www.lostspiritstech.net/science
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Re: 20 years of aging in 6 days

Postby Bamaberry » Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:07 pm

goinbroke2 wrote:Guys, I don't want to appear arrogant or brag in any way, but I've done the whole "fast aging" process and have gotten the times down to about 9hr's for a drink that tastes like 15 year old scotch....
Believe it or not I was propelled through the roof of the garage in a flash and landed more than 40ft from the garage in less than a second. This was definately jump drive or warp drive caused by plasma and dilithium crystals.....wait...is this the liars bench?...ah crap, sorry guys...wrong thread, my bad.. I just assumed from the bullshit story it must of been the liars bench and tried to out do it. :mrgreen:

Oh you summamabitch! :twisted: :crazy:

You damned experts tell us NOOBS to "read, read, read" so I READ READ READ!!!!
Next thing I know me & Goinbroke2 & Emmit Brown are using the flux capacitor in the back of the Delorean to make superhootch out of KALE or some other rotten shit!!!!

In other words, you got me!
:econfused: :clap:
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