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What is the best Sugar and Yeast?

max
edited October 19 in General

I used regular white bleached cane table sugar in a bunch of washes, it didn't come out great. I used honey which was pretty good. Are there other good ones as well? Perhaps corn syrup or brown sugar? Cheaper alternative are important as well of course.

Yeast is also an important component what kinds of yeasts are? First I used regular baking yeast, it sucks. then I used special schnapps turbo yeast from Brehuas america, pretty good. I saw yeast from redstar. Any suggested yeasts (specifically for different kinds of sugar washes i.e. honey, cane sugar, brown sugar) and what kind of wash should be used with that kind of sugar?

Comments

  • Depends on your end goal I guess, what are you trying to make? A raw sugar like a Demerara or Panela great in a rum, but would be a waste of time and money for a neutral.

    Corn syrup and Honey are among the most difficult to ferment, their high fructose levels are incredibly stressful for yeast ferments, and they are both entirely void of any real nutrient.

    White sugar can be interesting at lower gravities, but when you try to push it to absurd ABVs and stress the hell out of the yeast ... tastes like burning.

    Baking yeasts can be great for sugar, are cheap, readily available.

    Given the sugar base, I'd naturally lean towards rum yeasts.

    From a yeast character perspective, english ale yeasts (nottingham, etc) - these are really really interesting when underpitched and fermented around 80 (high esters, fruity, floral).

    But like I said above, if your end goal is a neutral, ignore what I said above.

  • edited October 19

    There is a topic called Newbie wanting help on some recipes and in there is a sugar wash that can end up around 14%.

    While a little slow it works great and you could drink it straight from fermenter.

    Dual Yeast Sugar wash I think its called. Thoroughly recommend it for sugar and much better than TPW - except for speed.

  • If you are going to spend 50 cents a pound on white sugar and tpw or other stuff, spend a bit extra on malted barley or rye and get something with phenomenal taste...

    downside, it is a bit more work..

    Upside, there are tons of people doing it, so you may already have a neighbor doing it.. you also have an excuse for everything you buy if distilling is not kosher where you are, and it has it's own nutrients build in, you can also make beer and the stuff that you make while learning doesn't make the cut for beer makes great whiskey or neutral... learning to make beverages that are high quality as just fermentations will really help your distilled spirit quality...

    curious, what types of fermentables are grown/produced in your area? that is what will dictate cheap fermentables...

  • edited October 19

    If you don't mind the higher price, unhopped malt extract makes a fine whiskey without the mashing step involved. The mashing part is done by the maltster for you. Just add water and go. Everything you need for a healthy ferment is contained in the extract (except yeast). Malt extract comes in syrup and dry form. Beginning homebrewers like it because it eliminates the mashing step. Some homebrew stores offer it in bulk form. They buy it by the drum, and dispense the amount you want to buy. Or online in 15kg. containers.

    I'm more like I am now than I was before.

  • max
    edited October 26

    @grim said: Corn syrup and Honey are among the most difficult to ferment, their high fructose levels are incredibly stressful for yeast ferments, and they are both entirely void of any real nutrient.

    Does that mean I cant use it or just that it wont go to a high ABV? Because if it just wont go to a high ABV I can use a strong yeast and put in less honey than the recommended amount for that yeast.

  • you can use them, but you need to keep the yeast happy and healthy.... research mead making and you can get 15%... but smarter to get 10% if you are going to distill it...

  • Over pitching can be helpful to push toward completion. But then you really do end up with a,,,,homemade, garage rig, amateurish finished product. Not as critical if you are rectifying and serving up freebees to your good buddies that will love you long time,,,,maybe.

    StillDragon North America - Your StillDragon® Distributor for North America

  • edited October 26

    That’s a pretty cynical take on hobby distilling.

    But, I know you and your respect for hobby distillers’ abilities and knowledge. So I am not offended. ;<)

    I'm more like I am now than I was before.

  • Thanks for your understanding. And your right. Bad choice of words there. Should have left out the homemade and garage bit and used something more appropriate.

    StillDragon North America - Your StillDragon® Distributor for North America

  • @CothermanDistilling said: you can use them, but you need to keep the yeast happy and healthy.... research mead making and you can get 15%... but smarter to get 10% if you are going to distill it...

    Why do you suggest that I have a lower precentage if I chose to distel it? Deos it make a better quality product when it's at a lower precentage? Deos this apply for all spirits?

  • Also does anyone know if there are other straight up suguars which are good to use aside from ready to use malt exrtacts? Such as dextrose, Cain suguars, regular grulanated suguar, sucrose, corn syrup, or brown suguar? I want to eliminate the process of malting or using friuts ect. Keep it simple.

  • The higher you go in ABV, the more you're stressing the yeast, the more you're getting undesirable favors. So yes, lower ABV makes generally better product.

  • Unless you do the dual yeast recipe I flagged. You can distill it or just straight drink it at 14. 5 ABV. It’s that smooth

  • You want the magic, staight up sugar. The inexpensive kind you just add water and yeast to and it turns into high quality GNS in 36 hours.

    I'm more like I am now than I was before.

  • You're talkin' real magic, right?

    Zymurgy Bob, a simple potstiller

    my book, Making Fine Spirits

  • Yep real magic

  • @Kapea said: You want the magic, staight up sugar. The inexpensive kind you just add water and yeast to and it turns into high quality GNS in 36 hours. HI mate,

    sorry to pull you up, but a sugar wash doesn't make GNS - the "grain" isn't there :) Neutral sure but GNS no.

  • edited November 9

    Correct.
    NS maybe.
    NGS definitely not.

  • edited November 10

    GNS/NGS has become the generic "Xerox" moniker for neutral spirits produced from a wide variety of fermentation sources.

    I'm more like I am now than I was before.

  • around here gns is ethanol produced by a an ethanol plant for burning in cars as car gas , the govt here is trying to shut down craft distillers buying it and re bottle it as neutral spirits . personally i hope they succeed but at very best they will have to label the product as such , setting a clear distinction between gns and real craft products .

    tim

  • edited November 18

    You would be surprised how many craft distilleries start off with bought spirit. Some redistil to give themselves more credibility others use it straight for making gin ets.

    Who to say. I am just hobby so it’s all about processes. The one place I questioned said Tarac ( a South Australia) producer from grape I think sad their product was exceptional and he could not produce a equal product so has no hesitation using it as a base. He has won many international awards.

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