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Hi All,

Decided to move to this forum in the hope everyone is nicer here :)

I have only been distilling since the beginning of this year and my poison is Bourbon (AG) and sometimes Rum. Not looking for any hand holding just good conversation and hopefully I will learn some more! I am friendly and respectful and expect the same courtesies.

Looking forward to getting to know you all!



  • Go away.

    Just kidding :)) Welcome @AB1965

  • welcome mate what breed of still you got there

  • welcome @ab1965.

    Interested in hearing about your AG bourbon exploits. its a nut I'm still trying to crack.

  • Welcome @AB1965, you will definitely like it here, we are the nicest place around for sure! :)

    Your Place to be >>> <<< Home of the StillDragon® Community Forum

  • Welcome AB1965

    StillDragon North America - Your StillDragon® Distributor for North America

  • Thanks for the welcome guys! To answer your questions;

    My still is a "competitors" 4 plate bubbler (sorry, feel awkward talking about it) that sits on a new 50 lt keg with a "4" ferrule and a 4" fill port. I use gas to heat it but have been thinking about putting elements in.

    My "go to" AG Whiskey is; 2kg cracked rye 2kg malted 6 row barley 8kgs Briess flaked corn 6kg sugar (haven't progressed to the no sugar way yet) 50litres water and adjusted ph of about 5 SAF Distillers Whiskey Yeast

    Maturing in;

    2 x American White oak barrels 5 litre 4 x 1 litre bottles with charred American White oak chips


  • Are you mashing & then fermenting on the grain or do you sparge after mashing & dispose of the spent grain?

    Or as you are still adding some sugar, are you not mashing & doing UJSM?

    Interested in how you are lautering or if you are squeezing out the liquid from the grain either before or after fermentation? Cause that is my major problem, formulating a recipe is fine, cooking & mashing corn has its challanges, but its the separation that kills me.


  • Sorry mate, here are the "gory" details :)

    I boil 25 litres of ph adjusted water and add sugar and flaked corn. I turn off the heat and stir with my trusty paint stirrer then I pop the lid on. I keep stirring every 15 mins and once the temps hits 70, I mix in the barley. The corn turns super thick/gelatinous and mixing is hard. Keep mixing very 15 mins till temp hits 60 and add rye. I add the remaining water. Keep mixing (and should be a lot easier now with the barley mad rye) till temp hits about 32-34 and pitch your yeast. I then cover to let ferment. Note; for subsequent mashes, I use about 4 litres of the backset. I ferment on grain as a personal preference as I feel more flavour comes across. When it's ready to run, I siphon into my boiler then, using a large conical SS strainer and filter, press out the rest of the liquid from the grain. I do not get every little drop just a rough push. I return the grains to the fermenter for the next few generations. I haven't yet starting "topping the grains up" during the generations as there seems very little waste of the original quantities. I find the resulting spirit very smooth with lots of flavour (and I prefer my spirits straight).

    I must say that I am a beginner and am still feeling my way but hope this helps.

    Sorry for the long reply :)

  • edited August 2014

    I've always found it easier to strain an AG mash after the ferment instead of before. In addition, lower risk of infecting your mash by separating afterwards, especially if your separation technique involves pots, strainer bags, lots of work with your hands, mop buckets, burst blood vessels in your forehead. Also, if you've got a higher rye percentage in your grain bill, something like a Beta Glucanase (Sebflo-TL) makes a difference, after fermentation the grain is absolute more loose and easy to strain. All of my AG mashes generally involve cereal grains or grains with high glucans, and are impossible to lauter, so I don't even bother trying. The last reason for this is that your overall yield will be higher fermenting on grain, especially if you use glucoamylase. Saccarification will continue through the fermentation process. Probably the #1 crutch for your first AG mashes, it's like buying insurance.

    The other trick a really wise pro taught me is that it's cheaper to just make more wash than to spend the time fighting over a little. You want to run 50 liters of wash? Make 90 liters of wash. Takes the same amount of time and effort, and what's that do to the cost of the wash? Raise it a few dollars at most? Take what you need off the top, if you need to strain a little, dip into the loose stuff, but stay away from the thick yeast+grain sludge. Of course, this is going to require that you have a garden, a pit, or some other place to dispose of the resulting slurry (makes great fertilizer). Once you throw out the concept of "yield", it makes the process much easier.

    Spent many a cold evening with a paint strainer sack and gallons of bourbon mash. My favorite part is when out of nowhere, a stream of wash spits out of the baq, usually all over your clothes, in your face, at your crotch. Anyone that's strained an ag mash with a strainer bag knows what I'm talking about. Or, after straining, you run out to do a quick errand and you wonder why everyone is looking at you funny, then you realize that you smell you you've been bathing in cheap beer.

  • Great read and advice Grim, thanks mate!

  • Welcome.

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

  • thanks mate - good write up.

  • Gday AB,

    I too became fed up with the "Nazi like" regime of another Oz forum and drifted over here.

    I reckon you'll enjoy it here.

    I've found the company most knowledgeable and very welcoming.

    Enjoy :)

  • @Elvis said: Gday AB,

    I too became fed up with the "Nazi like" regime of another Oz forum and drifted over here.

    I reckon you'll enjoy it here.

    I've found the company most knowledgeable and very welcoming.

    Enjoy :)

    Thanks mate, yeah, it was tough going; don't effin do that, your'e and effin joke..... Had all those type of comments. Anyway, onward and upward! BTW, have you left the building yet? Lol

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