Search found 111 matches

by DavidWatkins
Sat Dec 22, 2012 10:30 pm
Forum: Flavoring and Aging
Topic: Toasting Oak Chips
Replies: 21
Views: 9682

Re: Toasting Oak Chips

I have a gas stove and a hood. I just fold a sheet of heavy duty foil into a pan and toss a couple slices in on high flame. That way I can see how toasty the slices are getting.
by DavidWatkins
Wed Dec 19, 2012 11:06 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: First draft for a simple pot still... Advice wanted!
Replies: 17
Views: 2022

Re: First draft for a simple pot still... Advice wanted!

It isn't the first time I've not been on the most popular side. Meh, I do what works for me and never had a problem with shock cooling or huffing. Please, if your still works better the other way, keep doing it.
by DavidWatkins
Wed Dec 19, 2012 10:32 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: First draft for a simple pot still... Advice wanted!
Replies: 17
Views: 2022

Re: First draft for a simple pot still... Advice wanted!

If you do that, you're wasting fresh, cold water on distillate that has already condensed. By the time your coolant reaches the top of the liebig where the vapor temps are higher it has less effect. If you put cold water in the top, the coldest water is right where you need it most. I could care les...
by DavidWatkins
Wed Dec 19, 2012 9:26 pm
Forum: Yeasts, Enzymes, Fungi, Nutrients
Topic: fresh bakers yeast?
Replies: 8
Views: 1184

Re: Wyeast V4021?

As a lover of all things vanilla, I am terribly offended on all of your behalfs (behalves?, meh you know what I mean). Those prices are way to high if you're actually going to use the beans for more than one recipe a year. Order your vanilla beans by the pound and save a ton of money. For fresh, plu...
by DavidWatkins
Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:49 pm
Forum: Research and Theory
Topic: Beginner Keg Still Build Plans
Replies: 24
Views: 26997

Re: Beginner Keg Still Build Plans

+1 on the shape of the keg not mattering. The samohan design is solid and you can make some great booze that way. I have no strong feelings one way or another on the graham versus liebig vs shotgun issue except to say I use a liebig myself and not even a very large one all things considered. A half ...
by DavidWatkins
Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:28 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: First draft for a simple pot still... Advice wanted!
Replies: 17
Views: 2022

Re: First draft for a simple pot still... Advice wanted!

Your plans look solid but, if I may make a suggestion, I prefer to use liebig condensers myself. The copper coil has tradition going for it and I understand liking tradition, but it also screams "moonshine" to anyone who looks, costs a fair chunk of change, and is rather bulky. The liebig condenser ...
by DavidWatkins
Wed Dec 19, 2012 8:12 pm
Forum: Flavoring and Aging
Topic: Living bottle
Replies: 4
Views: 1062

Re: Living bottle

Or he could just be using domino size slices of oak. I run ex-wild turkey barrel staves across my jigsaw and end up with end grain slices about the size of a domino. End grain gets you some fast flavor transfer. Also, as far as the original topic goes, this is an excellent idea. I'll have to start o...
by DavidWatkins
Sat Dec 15, 2012 11:26 pm
Forum: Yeasts, Enzymes, Fungi, Nutrients
Topic: fresh bakers yeast?
Replies: 8
Views: 1184

Re: Wyeast V4021?

Sam's Club, Costco, GFS, Restaurant Depot all have one pound and two pound packages of yeast for great prices. Two pounds was $3.99 last time I bought any (compared to $1.50 for the fleischman's three pack of 7gram packets at the grocery store, or the $4.60 for a 2oz jar). Buy your yeast by the poun...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Dec 13, 2012 7:36 pm
Forum: Yeasts, Enzymes, Fungi, Nutrients
Topic: Fancy Grade Molasses and Yeast
Replies: 3
Views: 1290

Re: Fancy Grade Molasses and Yeast

I have two recipes I do at least semi regularly. I do pugirum and a recipe of my own (its in the recipe development section). I could probably do better if I re-used my dunder and tails from my recipe, but because of the cost and effort involved I only do it once or twice a year. My recipe makes a v...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Dec 13, 2012 7:02 pm
Forum: The Construction Site
Topic: I started building my pot still after work tonight!
Replies: 47
Views: 5952

Re: I started building my pot still after work tonight!

Looks great Tim, once everything is together, give it a shine (I've heard cherry coolaid works wonders as a copper polish) and take a few more pic's for us before it acquires a patina from use.
by DavidWatkins
Wed Dec 12, 2012 8:31 am
Forum: Still Related Hardware
Topic: Keg?
Replies: 18
Views: 1700

Re: Keg?

I've seen a couple of those kegs in person, that hole is just a filling/drain hole. There is the usual keg spear and tap arrangement at one end. Fair warning though, this style keg is usually used for imported beers so it may not be the american sankey fittings, that could be a european DIN keg. Not...
by DavidWatkins
Tue Dec 11, 2012 9:33 pm
Forum: Yeasts, Enzymes, Fungi, Nutrients
Topic: Fancy Grade Molasses and Yeast
Replies: 3
Views: 1290

Re: Fancy Grade Molasses and Yeast

If you are willing to experiment with a stepped ferment, I have had excellent results with White Labs Super High Gravity Yeast which if given time to do so will ferment to 25% (so White Labs and some brewers claim). It produces a fair amount of diacetyl, the ester that produces butterscotch flavors ...
by DavidWatkins
Tue Dec 11, 2012 9:18 pm
Forum: The Construction Site
Topic: My Bokakob
Replies: 27
Views: 5797

Re: My Bokakob

I cannot possibly explain the amount of money I have saved by paying cash and shaking hands. Not just distilling gear either. I bought a new fridge, well refurbished anyway, for $75 and a stove for $50 a couple years back. The ticket price was much higher but one handshake later, I loaded them into ...
by DavidWatkins
Tue Dec 11, 2012 9:07 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: Small whiskey barrel for gift?
Replies: 6
Views: 2130

Re: Small whiskey barrel for gift?

Oh god! At that price who cares about the quality? They better be gold plated before I pay $320 for a 5 liter barrel. Ridiculous. I much prefer the prices over at Barrels Online where that same barrel is $40, and they'll burn whatever logo or name into it that you want for free. Granted barrels onli...
by DavidWatkins
Mon Dec 10, 2012 7:35 am
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: Do you label your product
Replies: 21
Views: 1658

Re: Do you label your product

I print labels for bottles I give out, but all my private use stuff is sharpie on painters tape. For bottles I give as gifts, I like to print a label for three reasons. One, it looks nicer, in a gift looks count. Two, possession of untaxed alcohol is also illegal so a pretty label makes it less obvi...
by DavidWatkins
Fri Dec 07, 2012 6:06 pm
Forum: Recipe Development
Topic: Hibiscus ginger liqueur
Replies: 9
Views: 1512

Re: Hibiscus ginger liqueur

By weight 1:1 hibiscus:ginger tastes fine in my teas, but I enjoy a real kick from the ginger. Dried hibiscus flowers pack more of a punch than you might expect. I might use one tahitian vanilla bean(split and cut into pieces) per 4oz of ginger/hibiscus mix and 1/2-1oz lemongrass. Tahitian vanilla b...
by DavidWatkins
Fri Dec 07, 2012 9:49 am
Forum: Recipe Development
Topic: Hibiscus ginger liqueur
Replies: 9
Views: 1512

Re: Hibiscus ginger liqueur

I do two versions of hibiscus tea with ginger, one "hot" (served cold) and the other "cold" (served hot). For cool flavors I use hibiscus, ginger, vanilla bean, and lemongrass. As a hot tea, its pretty damn nice. While ginger can be spicy, the vanilla and lemongrass mellow it out and leave you with ...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Dec 06, 2012 11:43 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: Procuring regular needed items
Replies: 16
Views: 1612

Re: Procuring regular needed items

It is very very strange to me how all this stuff works out... I used to live not far from a sugar mill in Florida. I paid almost nothing for all the molasses I could want but NOBODY in my area owned livestock so I had to be real discreet. Now I've moved to Pennsylvania, and there is no molasses at a...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Dec 06, 2012 11:22 pm
Forum: Recipe Development
Topic: Hibiscus ginger liqueur
Replies: 9
Views: 1512

Re: Hibiscus ginger liqueur

Monterrey Bay Spice Company sells dried hibiscus , cut and sifted, for $4.80 per pound. I use it to make Sorrel, aka Jamaica aka Hibiscus tea, and I have to agree that ginger is a good flavor match. They also sell crystallized ginger for $6.80 per pound if you're not the type to make your own (which...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Dec 06, 2012 11:00 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: I need info how to make a good white rye whiskey
Replies: 2
Views: 609

Re: I need info how to make a good white rye whiskey

This forum emphasizes independent research rather than handing down "do it this way" from on high as if there were only one way to do it. You've got a couple options about how to approach this rye whiskey project of yours. #1 All Grain (best flavor, hardest) #2 Extract (easiest, most expensive) or #...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Dec 06, 2012 10:21 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: What Went Wrong?
Replies: 5
Views: 643

Re: What Went Wrong?

What did you do wrong? #1 You cannot measure distilled spirit strength with a regular hydrometer. You need an alcohol meter, aka proof and tralles hydrometer. It's a common mistake that is easy to remedy. #2 Pressure cookers make very poor stills, the rubber seals will leach unpleasant and possibly ...
by DavidWatkins
Mon Dec 03, 2012 5:13 pm
Forum: The Construction Site
Topic: My First Pot Still (small but a start)
Replies: 11
Views: 2673

Re: My First Pot Still (small but a start)

Unless they can provide paperwork certifying it to be safe for high proof alcohol and high temp acidic environments, the silicone sealant will not find any friends here. You do what you have to do, but the forum as a whole is anti-plastics of all variety. The forum rules, specifically #8, are clear ...
by DavidWatkins
Fri Nov 30, 2012 3:55 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: Best Scotch Recipe
Replies: 29
Views: 8548

Re: Best Scotch Recipe

Ok, we've got a couple issues here... The only suggestion I can make is to read the everloving hell out of the forums and the homedistiller.org website. You've got a lot of things to learn. #1 "Reflux thumper?" Thumpers go on pot stills not reflux stills. For a whisky, you want a pot still, not a re...
by DavidWatkins
Fri Nov 30, 2012 12:19 pm
Forum: Off-Topic Discussion
Topic: What is Our demographic?
Replies: 154
Views: 11767

Re: What is Our demographic?

30's white male, PA
by DavidWatkins
Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:49 am
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: Still on Ebay
Replies: 11
Views: 1113

Re: Still on Ebay

Durace11 wrote:More weather stripping gasket vodka?!?
YES PLEASE! You know that's my favorite flavor... :sick:
by DavidWatkins
Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:19 am
Forum: Mashing and Fermenting
Topic: true mashing vs sugar heading
Replies: 12
Views: 4450

Re: true mashing vs sugar heading

Dan, even the worst commercial scotch is a (blended) malt whisky. You can't get a malt whisky from dextrose. By its very definition, it starts with malted grains and water. Single malts start with a single variety of malted grain. Now I am not sure that my palate can distinguish and appreciate the a...
by DavidWatkins
Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:06 am
Forum: Still Related Hardware
Topic: Home Depot now sell 1.5" and 2" copper by the foot
Replies: 8
Views: 1392

Re: Home Depot now sell 1.5" and 2" copper by the foot

I'm in and out of HD daily for my day job. None of the stores in or around Pittsburgh, PA sell 2" at all. They'd be happy to order it for you though, just tell them what you need and it shall be done. Your best bet is to talk to the Pro Desk and lay it out for them what you need. Unlike the regular ...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Nov 29, 2012 10:46 pm
Forum: Sugar
Topic: sugar wash trials
Replies: 143
Views: 17771

Re: sugar wash trials

...but come on, this is getting ridiculous. I am not trying for a phd in fermentation... Could've fooled me! :lol: The essential criterion for a phd is that you increase the sum of humanity's knowledge in your chosen field beyond it's original boundaries. Sounds to me, after reading this thread, th...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Nov 29, 2012 10:17 pm
Forum: Novice Distillers
Topic: Patience Please?
Replies: 6
Views: 1206

Re: Patience Please?

There was a slight math wubble in the above post that deserves clarification. My first reaction was "that's not right..." and I don't want you to leave expecting something that isn't true. Five gallons of 10% would give you 1/2 gallon of pure alcohol, or 1 gallon of 100 PROOF (on the stronger side o...
by DavidWatkins
Thu Nov 29, 2012 4:56 pm
Forum: The Construction Site
Topic: Simple Keg Pot Still
Replies: 10
Views: 3027

Re: Simple Keg Pot Still

Excellent facial anonymizer device. Absolutely love it. Does it come anodized in hunter green?