what just happened

Other discussions for folks new to the wonderful craft of home distilling.

Moderator: Site Moderator

Post Reply
smokeybowls
Novice
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon May 25, 2020 7:51 am

what just happened

Post by smokeybowls » Thu May 28, 2020 12:17 pm

DISCLAIMER I ONLY DISTILL WATER AND THIS IS ALL IN THERORY. DISTILLING IS ILLEGAL IN U.S.

I am fairly new to this hoddy but I figured I would share this experience. Maybe it will help someone else or just give all you pros a good laugh 😂. This is what happened.


Just finished fermenting a 5 gallon wash . It was an experimental recipe . 5 lbs corn ,3 lbs raisons, 2 lbs of raw unfiltered honey and 10 lbs sugar .
OG was 1.100 and FG was 1.030. I probably should of let go few more days but that's beside the point . I charged boiler and off I go . This was a mile stone for me because I actually hit 130 proof for the first time . Everything was going great . Good taste and crystal clear . I ended up with 6 pints of my best spirit and best yeild I have been able to achieve since I began this hobby . Started collecting tails after 100 proof . I figured that would keep me away from tails. Collected one more pint jar of tails for later use . It was late but I decided to blend and bring down the proof before I call it quits. Blended in one big bowl and added spring water to bring down proof to 80 proof. Transfered to my filter and watch for the spirit to pass threw filter . Then I noticed it was cloudy . Pulled a glass from the bowl and dang it it all turned cloudy . Almost a gallon of cloudy spirit.
What a disappointment 😒 . After some research I learned i must of gotten some tails in my final product . I have a hard time tasting tails . I figured as long as I stop before it gets below 100 proof I should be good . Not the case at all . Lol .
My conclusion and what I learned .
Possibly too much sugar and I need to make smaller cuts and maybe blend the next day when my taste buds are well rested . Just thought I'd share my pain with everyone . Lol have a good day

User avatar
Thebigbrewbowski
Novice
Posts: 56
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2020 3:16 pm

Re: what just happened

Post by Thebigbrewbowski » Thu May 28, 2020 1:20 pm

Why not distill it again? itll get rid of the cloudiness

StillerBoy
Site Donor
Site Donor
Posts: 2265
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2016 6:27 pm
Location: Ontario

Re: what just happened

Post by StillerBoy » Thu May 28, 2020 1:35 pm

Yeah.. beginner's haste..

Where to begin.. 1.100, way to much sugars.. FG 1.030, still lots of fermentable sugars..
No idea of runs, meaning a stripping run and spirit run.. and to that no idea what cuts are..

I could ask a few more, that that will do for starter..

Time is your friend in this hobby, learn to slow down some, and learn the process required for fermenting, then distilling, then cuts, then aging.. and it will come together as each section is learned..

The old saying apply here.. Rome was not built in a day.. take time to learn first then do..

Mars
" I know quite certainly that I myself have no special talent. Curiosity, Obsession and dogged endurance, combined with self-criticism, have brought me to my ideas "

– Albert Einstein

User avatar
still_stirrin
Master Distiller
Posts: 7999
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:01 am
Location: where the buffalo roam, and the deer & antelope play

Re: what just happened

Post by still_stirrin » Thu May 28, 2020 2:17 pm

+1 to Mars & brewbowski.

Smokeybowls (green state?)...remember.....you can’t make cuts by proof!!!
ss
Attention new distillers: Cranky's spoon feed info
My LM/VM & Potstill: My build thread
My 5-grain Bourbon recipe: Special K

User avatar
Tummydoc
Site Donor
Site Donor
Posts: 659
Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2014 1:05 pm

Re: what just happened

Post by Tummydoc » Thu May 28, 2020 6:09 pm

You did a stripping run, it will have fusel oils that are only soluble at high proof and came out of solution when you lowered the proof. They became a suspension rather than solution and thus cloudy when you lowered the proof. You're only half way there. You need to run more washes, combine the outputs and rerun as a spirit run to get a decent product. What you see on TV with a decent product on a single pot distillation is garbage.

And your disclaimer line...won't be a defense so be discrete.


Jstroke
Bootlegger
Posts: 101
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2020 10:51 am
Location: somewherenorthahere

Re: what just happened

Post by Jstroke » Thu May 28, 2020 7:01 pm

Smokey, since I am as new to this as a brand new babe I would advise to disregard everything i might think. But, here is what is slowly working for me. Recognizing tails is tough. But if you collect your run into roughly 36 numbered and proof recorded jars equally, first of all no tasting at full strength. Secondly, dont bother the day you run. Cover them with coffee filters or a few clean kitchen towels for a couple of days. Ok, 2 days later first things first. Pick up jar 15 and smell it. Then go smell jar 36. Do this a few times. No tasting. You should smell a difference. Jar 36 might remind you of wet cardboard, wet newspaper, wet wood, wet dog. Not nasty, but just not the kind of smell you want in your glass. Now, starting with Jar 15, water it down to roughly 35 proof. I use a shot glass and a 1/2 teaspoon. Then taste and spit. It should be pretty neutral. Now work towards heads and tails, one jar up and one jar down, smelling at full strength, tasting and spitting at watered down. You should find the heads by the heat/peppery fiery bite. To me it tastes like I have been soaking a jalapeño in it. You will find tails the same way just a different smell/taste. Once I find them, i go one jar each way 1 extra. Then i’ll find my sweet spot on both heads and tails. This method takes me time, but right now im learning and anything I dont keep can be run again.

J
Beware of the old man in a young man’s game

User avatar
still_stirrin
Master Distiller
Posts: 7999
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:01 am
Location: where the buffalo roam, and the deer & antelope play

Re: what just happened

Post by still_stirrin » Fri May 29, 2020 4:03 am

Jstroke wrote:
Thu May 28, 2020 7:01 pm
....Then taste and spit. It should be pretty neutral. Now work towards heads and tails, one jar up and one jar down, smelling at full strength, tasting and spitting at watered down....
Work your way down to the tails first before woring up towards the heads. Heads are easy to distinguish and the solvents will corrupt your senses making it difficult to decipher the subtle differences towards the tails. So, work down first..then up.
ss
Attention new distillers: Cranky's spoon feed info
My LM/VM & Potstill: My build thread
My 5-grain Bourbon recipe: Special K

User avatar
Saltbush Bill
Site Mod
Posts: 4160
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2011 2:13 am
Location: Northern NSW Australia

Re: what just happened

Post by Saltbush Bill » Fri May 29, 2020 5:32 am

Jstroke wrote:
Thu May 28, 2020 7:01 pm
Secondly, dont bother the day you run. Cover them with coffee filters or a few clean kitchen towels for a couple of days. Ok, 2 days later first things first. Pick up jar 15 and smell it. Then go smell jar 36. Do this a few times. No tasting. You should smell a difference. Jar 36 might remind you of wet cardboard, wet newspaper, wet wood, wet dog. Not nasty, but just not the kind of smell you want in your glass.
Your on it and learning fast Jstroke. :thumbup: ..pay attention to what this fella is telling you Smokey.

Jstroke
Bootlegger
Posts: 101
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2020 10:51 am
Location: somewherenorthahere

Re: what just happened

Post by Jstroke » Fri May 29, 2020 7:52 am

still_stirrin wrote:
Fri May 29, 2020 4:03 am
Work your way down to the tails first before woring up towards the heads. Heads are easy to distinguish and the solvents will corrupt your senses making it difficult to decipher the subtle differences towards the tails. So, work down first..then up.
ss
SS. That is a very good point and something I hadn't even recognized. The heat of the heads will “burn” your taste buds out and not really allow the subtleties of tails to be filly worked out.

Mental note taken
J
Beware of the old man in a young man’s game

smokeybowls
Novice
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon May 25, 2020 7:51 am

Re: what just happened

Post by smokeybowls » Thu Jun 04, 2020 2:38 pm

Thanks for all the advise . I will soak it up and apply to my next theoretical run . Thanks again everyone for the great advise . You all rock !

smokeybowls
Novice
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon May 25, 2020 7:51 am

Re: what just happened

Post by smokeybowls » Thu Jun 04, 2020 2:48 pm

Thebigbrewbowski wrote:
Thu May 28, 2020 1:20 pm
Why not distill it again? itll get rid of the cloudiness
That's what I did . I lost out on the yeild but boy howdy it turned out tasty . Corn and raisins on the nose and a taste of honey on the back .

smokeybowls
Novice
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon May 25, 2020 7:51 am

Re: what just happened

Post by smokeybowls » Thu Jun 04, 2020 2:49 pm

Jstroke wrote:
Thu May 28, 2020 7:01 pm
Smokey, since I am as new to this as a brand new babe I would advise to disregard everything i might think. But, here is what is slowly working for me. Recognizing tails is tough. But if you collect your run into roughly 36 numbered and proof recorded jars equally, first of all no tasting at full strength. Secondly, dont bother the day you run. Cover them with coffee filters or a few clean kitchen towels for a couple of days. Ok, 2 days later first things first. Pick up jar 15 and smell it. Then go smell jar 36. Do this a few times. No tasting. You should smell a difference. Jar 36 might remind you of wet cardboard, wet newspaper, wet wood, wet dog. Not nasty, but just not the kind of smell you want in your glass. Now, starting with Jar 15, water it down to roughly 35 proof. I use a shot glass and a 1/2 teaspoon. Then taste and spit. It should be pretty neutral. Now work towards heads and tails, one jar up and one jar down, smelling at full strength, tasting and spitting at watered down. You should find the heads by the heat/peppery fiery bite. To me it tastes like I have been soaking a jalapeño in it. You will find tails the same way just a different smell/taste. Once I find them, i go one jar each way 1 extra. Then i’ll find my sweet spot on both heads and tails. This method takes me time, but right now im learning and anything I dont keep can be run again.

J

Thanks for the break down . I'm going to follow your process on my next try . I think that would really help my process. Thanks a bunch ! :thumbup:

Post Reply