Wednesday, February 28, 2024

How To Charcoal Filter Whiskey

Vodka Brita Filter Mythbusters

How to Make Moonshine Part 7: Carbon Filtering (Charcoal)

But DOES it work for vodka though? I mean, thats what everyone is trying it with. Magically turn Smirnoff into Grey Goose for only $40 worth of filters and a wasted few hours. Can you think of a dumber way to spend your time or money?

Because people will try anything, in 2006 the show MythBusters set out to get the last word on whether carbon filtration of vodka made a difference, or not. They passed their control vodka through a Brita Filter six times and then had the results tasted by a World Spirits Competition judge and two lesser experts.

Anthony Dias Blue, the World Spirits Competition judge, nailed it in his analysis of the samples. The lesser experts, not so much.

What Is The Difference Between Filtered And Unfiltered Vodka

But Unfiltered is made from a different rye variety, one which has a lower starch content and more gentle and subtle characteristics. To keep these intact and preserve the vodkas texture, the filtration process is left out entirely. Filtration is a finishing step, one that can either work for or against a spirit.Aug 28, 2014.

How Do You Filter Whiskey With Charcoal


Likewise, how do you make a charcoal alcohol filter?

Take the hearts and proof them down with water to the desired percentage of alcohol. Then filter the alcohol water mixture through the activated carbon. When filtering the slower the alcohol goes through the carbon the better it filters. Multiple passes through the carbon helps filter even more.

One may also ask, can you filter alcohol through a Brita filter? Yes, it’s true, pouring vodka several times through an ordinary water filter like a Brita or Pur can really improve the taste of vodka. A test by America’s Test Kitchen showed a marked improvement in flavor, especially when the vodka was used in cocktails or cooking.

One may also ask, how do you filter whiskey?

Chill filtering is a method in whisky making for removing residue. In chill filtering, whisky is cooled to between 10° and 4° Celsius and passed through a fine adsorption filter. This is done mostly for cosmetic reasons to remove cloudiness rather than to improve taste or consistency.

Can you pour whiskey on charcoal?

Whiskey. The method is similar to the one with oil except you pour a high proof whiskey on the coals. So, if you want to pour your whiskey onto coals instead of into glasses, go for it.

  • Powder the charcoal.
  • Make a 25% solution of calcium chloride using your water.
  • Make a paste slowly add the calcium chloride solution to the powdered charcoal and mix until a spreadable paste has formed.
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    Everything You Need To Know About Chill Filtered Whiskey

    While chill-filtering prevents unsightly haze, many distillers dont like it because long-chain esterslarge molecules which contribute to a whiskeys flavor and mouthfeelare also filtered out in the process. At the same time, they dont want to put a cloudy whiskey on the shelf. Paul Hletko, founder of FEW Spirits in Illinois, says thats why his bourbons and ryes are all bottled above 46% ABV. There are multiple reasons why we bottle our whiskey at a relatively high proof, and our lack of chill-filtration is one of them, he explains. We dont get haze because were above that floc point. But Ill tell you, if we were selling our stuff at 80 proof, we would chill-filter.

    If we were selling our stuff at 80 proof, we would chill-filter. Paul Hletko, FEW Spirits

    Filtering Wine With A Brita

    Alcohol Filter

    If it works for vodka, why not wine? Especially red wines that are known to have high levels of sulphites. Its better than nothing, right? Asks a participant at The answer is a swift and definitive NO.

    Carbon kills the flavors and tannins in your wine, so youre actually doing damage, not improving it.

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    Why Is Whiskey Aged

    Why is whiskey aged? Well, similarly to many other longstanding traditions, the practice of barrel aging grew out of necessity. Early producers and transporters of wine used wooden barrels to ferment and then ship their products. Though, the practice has withstood the test of time because, coincidentally, long term storage in barrels has a positive effect on the character and smoothness of most alcoholic beverages. Early consumers of these beverages noticed that the longer the beverages had been stored in barrels, the better they tasted. Thus, the demand for barrel aged wine and spirits was born.

    What Happens During Aging

    During the storage period changes in temperature and humidity cause alcohol to be pushed into and sometime sucked out of out of the wooden walls of aging barrels. As this natural ebb and flow occurs the alcohol is gently filtered by the wood. Some of the whiskey actually evaporate through the wooden container walls . At the same time, vanillins and tannin are extracted from the wood and impart their unique flavor and color to the whiskey. The cumulative effect of the intricate process of barrel aging is a final product that has more character and less bite than the clear, fiery spirit that went into it.

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    What Is Lincoln County Process

    The Lincoln County Process is famous in Tennessee, and the critical difference between Tennessee and other Bourbon whiskeys is they dont use this process.

    The first thing that producers do is get complex sugar maple trees for the production of charcoal. As Tennessee is an indigenous region, there are plenty of sugar maple trees available. If you think about why sugar maple trees are used, they are hardwood, and burning hardwood at higher temperatures gives great production of charcoal. Then charcoal is chipped in the roller to make chips of charcoal. If you want to know what size charcoal to filter, Whiskey must be used, and you must understand that charcoal chips are best, no matter whether it is round or square. The producers never go for large pieces as it becomes hard to go through the whole way. Although this filtration is a time-consuming task, the filtered Whiskeys taste is significant.

    Why Some Distillers Choose To Chill

    How To Make A Cheap Alcohol Carbon Filter

    But not all distillers agree. Andrea Wilson, master of maturation at Michters, says that removing some of the longer-chain esters really allows us to showcase aspects of the whiskey that might otherwise be masked by dominant characteristics. Michters chill-filters all its whiskeys, from its 42.4% ABV US*1 line of bourbon, rye, and whiskey right up to its cask-strength expressions. At such high proofs , these whiskeys dont need chill-filtering, but Wilson says they benefit from the process. Each whiskey gets its own meticulous, and specific, filtration scheme. When we develop new expressions, we have to go through an entire process that could take many months of understanding the chemistry and dialing in each variable to achieve the best representation of that whiskey, Wilson explains. Michters keeps its practices under wraps, but they encompass everything from the temperature at which filtration takes place to the materials from which the filters are made.

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    In Defense Of Lower Proof Whiskey

    Distiller Lisa Wicker, whose Widow Jane 10 year old bourbon sits at 45.5% ABVjust below the floc pointchooses not to chill-filter, but she understands why certain distillers choose to do it. Everyone has tasted whiskey that could possibly benefit from chill-filtering, she says, noting that chill-filtration can remove off notes on the nose or palate just as much as it might affect appealing ones. Its a balancing act. The blender or distiller may be afraid of the perception of their whiskey , or if it is a small distillery, they may not be able to pull off the logistics to do it. Wicker chooses not to chill-filter Widow Jane because its intentionally intenseI want to keep everything I blend in the final product. She also doesnt worry about customers complaining about cloudy whiskey when its chilled. Questions about cloudy whiskey were more prevalent before consumers became as educated as they are today, she notes.

    How Long Does Oak Aging Take

    Fantastic results can be achieved in a relatively short amount of time with home aging. This is because the surface to liquid ratio of DIY aging kits is much higher than that of barrels. The commercial whiskey industry ages their product in 53 gallon barrels to achieve a better economy of scale. In small batch aging using oak sticks in a small container there is more wooden surface area in contact with the whiskey. It’s less efficient from a materials standpoint but much more efficient from a time and aging standpoint. All of that extra surface area rapidly accelerates aging of the spirits. Aged perfection that takes years to achieve in 53 gallon barrels can be accomplished in a matter of days/weeks with charred oak sticks.

    The benefits of aging can be negated if too much of the wood flavor is imparted to the whiskey. “Over oaking” your spirit is a definite possibility. Every few days or weeks, a small sample should be drawn from the vessel to ascertain quality of aging. Once the whiskey has achieved the color and smoothness of your liking, transfer it to a glass bottle or jar for long term storage.

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    Commercial Moonshine And Alcohol Filtering

    We have tested and found the best carbon for alcohol carbon filtering. We buy thousands of pounds a year and from the same company for over 10 years we can insure you this is the best carbon for moonshine filtering or carbon filtering spirits. This is the same carbon that large distilleries use for brand name high end vodkas that you see on the liquor store shelf. Buying in large bulk we can sell at lower prices than most other companies and we bag the carbon in zip lock bags so you can reseal the unused carbon for later use. You will be amazed how well this carbon works. I guarantee it.

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    What Makes A Tennessee Whiskey A Tennessee Whiskey And Not A Bourbon

    A visit to the Jack Daniel

    Bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey are not the same thing. Sure these two whiskeys historically hail from states that are right next to one another and they both look eerily similar side by side in a glass, but to call a Tennessee Whiskey a bourbon devalues the unique process and rich history which causes the spirit to receive its own classification in the first place.

    Initially Tennessee Whiskey and Bourbon are made in the exact same way. They are both distilled from at least 51% corn, and go into charred new oak barrels to age. Where the spirits differ drastically however is in regards to what happens just before the freshly distilled clear spirit goes into the barrels. In Tennessee, it gets charcoal filtered.

    Known as the Lincoln County Process, fresh whiskey is filtered through or steeped in charcoal chips before the whiskey goes into a barrel to age. And it seems no two Tennessee Whiskey producers complete the process in exactly the same way.


    At Jack Daniels, probably the most famous Tennessee Whiskey producer, Sugar Maple wood is soaked in 140 proof Jack, set on fire and reduced to charcoal, which is ground into bean-sized pellets. New whiskey is then poured through the pellets and placed immediately into barrels.

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    What Is The Common Filtration Method In Producing Vodka

    It is believed that genuine vodka is the one filtered through birch coal. 2.It is believed that among all existing methods of carbon processing of the water-alcohol mixture, the most effective method is filtration through a carbon column . In view of its broad use, this method is considered classic.

    To Chill Filter Or Not To Chill Filter

    Editors Note: Weve just launched sign ups for our upcoming The Whiskey Wash newsletter. informed!

    Chill filtration is a process that consists of chilling a whiskey to about 0 degrees Celsius and running it through a fin absorption filter. The process removes various residues prior to bottling. A non-filtered whisky that is 44% ABV or lower will turn cloudy when water or ice is added. Believing that many consumers would see this as a defect, some distillers opt to use chill-filtration to prevent this from happening.

    According to the minds behind Whisky for Everyone, chill filtration is mainly cosmetic. Distillers that choose to chill filter contend that the process does not alter the taste and operates as a mechanism to produce a more consistent product. Yet some traditionalist critics believe that removing the natural fatty acids, esters and proteins during chill filtration alters the spirits aroma and flavor characteristics, produces produces a diluted, less sophisticated version of a non-chill filtered whisky.

    image via Adam Sun/flickr

    Bruichladdich, for example, opts not to use chill filtration because it bottles at a higher strength and stands by the science that says the ethyl acetate a common ester does in fact contribute to its flavor character. They would rather a haze in the glass than to lose the flavor and texture created all those years ago during fermentation and ameliorated over years of maturation.

    So who is right about chill filtration?

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    What Are Barrel Char Levels And How Do They Affect The Way My Whiskey Tastes

    Any bourbon lover, and by this point most bourbon likers, can tell you that bourbon legally has to be aged in a charred new oak barrel. But not every bourbon lover will be able to tell you about char levels.

    Fortunately for those of us already drowning in whiskey and spirits minutiae, char levels are exactly what they sound like: the degree to which a distiller chars a fresh white American oak barrel before filling it with a spirit meant for maturation. And while the purpose of charring seems sort of intuitivea charred surface yields a smoky flavor, right?the effects are far more complicated. And delicious.

    In fact, smoke is one of the lesser goals of charring. Unlike peating a Scotch whisky , charring the inside of a barrel wont necessarily yield congruently smoky results. Rather, charring is done to change the nature of the oak itself, to yield the best possible reaction between wood and whiskey.


    To understand why charand to what extentits useful to know whats going on in the wood itself. They may stand weirdly still outside of Entwood, but trees actually have a lot going on in them. Again, fortunately, whiskey barrel science is concerned with a small group of compounds. Theres the cellulose, which creates a tight bond , hemicellulose, lignin, tannins, and oak lactones. And the extent to which you char a barrel will have an impact on those last four.

    And now, what we all came here for. Videos of barrels being set on fire.

    Is Bourbon Filtered Through Charcoal

    Should you filter your liquor? Charcoal vs Activated Carbon

    Though your bottle of bourbon may bear the words charcoal filtered, the process is different from the Lincoln County Process. Most bourbons in fact Bookers bourbon is the only exception are filtered after aging and before bottling with activated charcoal. No flavor is imparted by activated charcoal.

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    The Specifics Of The Lincoln County Process

    Jack Daniels uses 80 individual filtration vats that are 14-feet tall and 70 to 72-inches wide. The vats are filled with 10 feet of charcoal which is burned and created on-site . The spirit takes two days to gravity filter through the charcoal. The charcoal in each vat lasts for approximately nine months.

    Inside Jack Daniels charcoal filtration vats /Photo Credit: Jack Daniels

    The charcoal could potentially last up to a year, but weve found that nine months is a good duration for us based on feedback from our team of tasters, Fletcher says. Jack was notorious in his day for insisting on using a large amount of charcoal, closely monitoring the vats and mandating the charcoal be replaced often. And thats still the way we do it today.

    When whiskey drinkers learn about the Lincoln County Process theyll hear about things such as sugar maple charcoal. The natural assumption is that the process adds flavor and sweetness to whiskey. But you know what they say about assuming.

    Is Jim Beam Charcoal Filtered

    The Jim Beam Choice Green Label is a sour mash Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey aged for 5 years and charcoal-filtered. Unlike the Lincoln County Process of making Tennessee whiskey where charcoal-filtering occurs before aging in casks, this bourbon is charcoal-filtered after aging and before bottling.

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    George Dickel Classic 8 Whiskey

    Another addition of George Dickel, this is a bolder whiskey than Barrel select. This Tennessee whiskey comes with a smooth and balanced flavor with a caramel and wood aroma. It also offers maple and butter corn flavor. If you like traditional whiskeys, then for sure, you will love to add this to your cart.

    What Is Charcoal Filtered Whiskey

    Moonshine Still ,Carbon filter System.wmv

    Charcoal filteringfilteringcharcoalwhiskey

    . Also, is Bourbon filtered through charcoal?

    Though your bottle of bourbon may bear the words “charcoal filtered,” the process is different from the Lincoln County Process. Most bourbons – in fact Booker’s bourbon is the only exception – are filtered after aging and before bottling with activated charcoal. No flavor is imparted by activated charcoal.

    Similarly, what does charcoal mellowed mean? Charcoal mellowing. The act of filtering unaged whiskey through maple charcoal before going into the barrela requirement for Tennessee whisky.

    Keeping this in consideration, does charcoal filter remove alcohol?

    Alcohol filtering with carbon will clean the spirit or polish the spirit by removing impurities. When alcohol carbon filtering the alcohol will be a smooth clean pure product. High end vodkas are filtered with activated carbon many times to get the pure clean neutral spirit that wins awards.

    Is Scotch charcoal filtered?

    Scotch is made mostly from malted barley, while bourbon is distilled from corn. The difference between Tennessee Whiskey, like Jack Daniel’s, for example, and Bourbon is that after the spirit is distilled, Tennessee Whiskey is filtered through sugar-maple charcoal.

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