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Anyone add a small amount of grain to a sugar wash to give vodka a little rounding of the taste?

edited December 2013 in Recipes

I'm talking way less grain than UJSM. This is in addition to tomato paste and citric acid. More like 5 to 10 percent. Maybe something like malted barley or other.


  • Aces foolproof neutral @ AD


    This will be the next one I try: Aidanmac's Lentil Wash is a cost effective wash from the looks of it...

    Lentil Wash @ StillSmart

    follow up post on someone who is trying this wash:

    lentils wash...first timer @ StillSmart

    have fun, take care and HAPPY STILLINGMAS


  • edited December 2013

    The Artisan link is the same way i make neutral. I use Dap, multivitamins and a few handlfulls of whole or cracked neutral grain for nutrients. Wheat or oats are really good as they have very little flavour compared to barley.

    It's not so much to get the flavour to come across for me as it is to add the nutrients without adding flavour ingredients like tomato paste.

    StillDragon Australia & New Zealand - Your StillDragon® Distributor for Australia & New Zealand

  • And I agree with you Punkin, it just made wonderful vodka for me!

  • Thanks guys, great information.

  • BTW I prefer the grain added over tomato paste many times over.... but that's my personal preference


  • Best sugar vodka I have made so far. Was a sugarhead using the spent wheat from a AG wheat mash. I did a 10 gal batch of AG wheat. With about 12 lbs of grain. I split that grain between two 5 gallon buckets. Added water, sugar, and yeast.

    Mite be a little more grain then you are talking about. But it is spent grain. And it was good.

  • Not to derail, but has anyone used corn to add some bourbon-ish flavor?

  • Been doing this for years, even when some said it was impossible . whole grain flour works very well, I cook it and mash it then add . You can flavor with rye, wheat , barley, what ever or mix it. > Boil water first or you will scortch. Don't use ryce alone it is sticky , mix with wheat so it doesn't clump.You can even grind malt , to do the same thing the flavor will come through. Vary the amount to get light whiskey or vodka or something in between. yeah the grain flavor of burbon can be done this way, not as strong but still there, but you need wood to get the whole thing.

    Sugar head ? tired of it, is offensive..definitly intended to be negative. time for it to leave the room

    BAck at them grainer's with the trash talk....

    What about "Grain Brain"? defined as an unreasonable desire to make simple sugar from grain , even though it may not be necessary ,reasonable all the time or that modern sugar industry make this practice less than sensible for a small distiller. Or perhaps a unreasonable desire to make less alcohol from any given batch for the sake of undefinable "flavors" some of us call heads and tails.

    yeah I jest but it actually make as much sense as "Sugar head" it's just idealistic crap...done it both way, you can make good stuff or trash either way.

  • If we could only get Bran to post how he feels....

  • Some excellent advice there. Just to add to @brantoken's post, I know our local brewery adds a percentage of flour, in combination with malted barley for their "Draught" beer.

    @Prairiepiss has an excellent idea of re-using the spent grain. I'll be giving that one a try next year.

  • Someone really don't like sugar washes. LOL

    Piggybacking a sugarhead off a AG can be done one of two ways.

    First if you ferment off the grain. Just add the grains to a fermenter after straining or separating. Add sugar water and yeast. This is what I did on the above. I also didn't strain it all that great. Knowing I would be using it in a piggyback.

    Second if you ferment your AG on the grain. Just add sugar water to the fermenter. After you rack the AG beer off. Yeasties are allready to go.

    I won't make a sugarhead wash over 8% potential ABV anymore. I found I get a much better end product staying under 8%. Sugar adds a hot taste as I call it. And I don't get that when staying under 8%.

  • got no problems with techniques, just the goofy names for them.... Actually I almost never do a straight sugar wash or grain wash. Always something in between. I try to imagine my self an artist and the additives as paint, weird yes, but if your goal is artisan , You'll never get there doing what everyone else is doing, The big boys will beat you every time, The major advantage of small production is rapid change and the ability to innovate and implement very quickly.

    I think a lot of folks would be surprised at the amount of good flavor you can get with the simple addition e of a bit of mashed grain. A lot of good taste can be had for a relative small amount of grain based additives. In my experience flour will produce less heat than a whole grain milled. Flaked grain is also useful as something in between flour and grain. Actually I mostly use a combined technique depending on what I want as a product outcome. To only use one method , your only limiting yourself.

    I think the hot taste is caused by chunks of raw Husk and sugar. Try a mash of oats and oats flakes to compare or brewer milled whole rye and rye flour. Also found that un happy yeast produce hot taste( temp, ph, nutrients...etc) Have been correcting ph before stilling lately, plays hell with sour mash but the end product is notably smoother.

  • If we could only get Bran to post how he feels....

    Sorry tired,not thinking clearly and short tempered, going to bartending school this week, is kicking my tired old ass. Getting some great perspectives on the alcohol industry and the people who drive it.

  • Best vodka I've made was from rice, but the process was for me excessive.

    So, now I add malted rice to my sugar washes. It adds nutrients for the ferment and gives a great subtle flavor.

    DAD... not yours.. ah, hell... I don't know...

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