Distilling with your Brewery
What even is distilling… and how are brewers doing it? Co-founder, Master Distiller and all around good-guy Brent Ryan breaks it down by six simple areas of overlap.
First, you gotta know the facts. Distilling is the process of fermenting a liquid solution of sugar with yeast to create alcohol. By boiling this slowly, you evaporate the alcohol and condense it back to a liquid form.
What makes distillation overlap so closely with brewing is that fermentation/heating/cooling process. Brent helps us look at this commonalities step by step…
A brewery is already set up to handle many of the elements needed for a distilling operation.
Open spaces for production
Barrel/finished product warehousing
Shipping & receiving
The mechanical heart of a distillery is very similar to that of a brewery.
Domestic and processed water piping & storage
Recycling & conservation opportunities
Advantages brewers have over start up distilleries
Your existing brewing equipment is often not only functional in a distillery, but can be superior.
Pumps & hoses
Clean in place
As brewers, you already know more about fermentation than a lot of distillers.
Fermentation times, curves, yeast & temps.
Mashing & lautering (Scotch Whiskey technique)
Some things breweries will need to address…
Mash cooler/pumps (certain fermentables)
Explosion proof pumps
Bottle filling equipment
Small community (home distilling is illegal in the U.S.)
While generally regulated by the same entities, distilleries follow different rules than breweries.
Labeling & marketing