Make bourbon and get it right and you will want to repeat the process over and over again. There is nothing better than sipping your own smooth bourbon especially at the end of a hard day’s work. Many people are attempting to distill their own bourbon because of the cheaper costs involved and also because it is challenging to get it jut right. In order to make your bourbon you will have to relocate to Kentucky where it is not illegal to make the genuine stuff.
The simple ingredients are Corn, Barley, Rye and Wheat. The ratios are as follows: Malted barley (10%), corn (70%), wheat (10%) and rye (10%). The addition of wheat causes the whiskey to become more supple and soft on the drinker’s tongue. Next you have to grind together the four grains mentioned above into a rough mixture (something like coarse sand). Add the water which should be of good quality and it will become a slurry.
You have to cook this mixture of water and grain slurry for about 30 minutes and this will now become a mash. It is important to cool this mixture down so that yeast cells are not killed. Put in the yeast after the mash has cooled to 25-30 degrees C and pour this into a fermenter in order to develop into a 9-10% ABV beer.
At this time, during the alcoholic fermentation, the yeast will do its job in converting the sugar into an alcohol and carbon dioxide. Heat is also produced at this time. This fermentation process lasts for three days and the strength of the alcohol is about 10% at this time. This beer-type brew should now be distilled.
The use of a column distiller is ideal. It will help achieve alcohol content that is approximately 60 Vol% alcohol. Alcohol content can be raised further if the columns in the distiller are higher.
The next step is toasting your bourbon barrels. This is what gives the Kentucky bourbon a unique and special taste. This “toasting” is done by holding the white oak barrel on its side over a tiny fire. This leads to “caramelizing” of the wood-sugar present in the staves. This procedure usually lasts for around 6 -12 seconds. After this the white oak barrel is burned with huge flames on the inside for another 12 seconds giving it a nice charcoal layer.
Fill this toasted white oak barrel with your liquor and store it at a temperature that is controlled for at least two years. After this you can bottle it and sell it. The fact remains that not all types of whiskey are bourbon but all bourbons are in fact whiskey! Almost all types of bourbon whiskey is produced in the USA – Tennessee and Kentucky. Limestone spring water and plenty of oak is available in both these states.
Make bourbon at home using the simple recipes and instructions that are available online or even in books. Bourbon’s character stems from the 50-79% of corn. This alcohol can be double distilled and is aged for 2 years at least in toasted/charred barrels. Nothing beats the taste of the woody and mellow blend of bourbon flavors.