Whiskey, also spelled as whisky, is an alcoholic beverage made from grains. It can be made from different grains like wheat, corn, rye, barley, etc. Wooden casks are used to age this beverage. These casks are made normally from white oak. Apart from the ones made from corn or maize, all other whiskey types are aged. It is one of the most strictly regulated spirits all around the world. Variation in the quality and taste of this beverage occurs because of the duration for which the grains are fermented, distillation process used, type of wood used for making the caskets and the duration of aging. Although one can buy the best whiskey in the market, nothing beats the taste of that made at home.
How to Make Whiskey at Home
Making this beverage can be a great experience. The idea of making it has an old tradition. It dates back to the time when farmers made their own alcoholic beverages. The beauty of making it lies in the way home distilling is done using the natural process of evaporating a liquid into vapor and then condensing it back to the liquid form. The process is similar to the manner in which rainwater is created.
How to Make Corn Whiskey
- Corn Kernels 10 lbs.
- Champagne Yeast Starter, 1 cup
- Water, 5 gallons
- Burlap Bag
- Pillow Case
- The corn kernels you use should be whole and untreated.
- Put them in a burlap bag.
- Now run warm water on the burlap and wet it completely.
- Keep the bag in a place which is warm, but away from light. It is important that the bag is placed in a dark room. Leave the bag in the said place for 10 days.
- After 10 days, check the bag. If corn sprouts have emerged from the bag, which are at least ¼ inches in length, go to the next step.
- Else, leave the bag in the same place till you see the sprouts coming out.
- After the sprouts have come out, remove the corn and place it inside a tub of water.
- The next step can be a little tedious, as you will have to remove all the sprouts and roots from the kernels. You will have to rub the kernels in order to do the same.
- After removing the sprouts and roots, place the corn in a fermenter.
- Using a pole, mash the kernels thoroughly till they crack. You can make use of a pole for the same.
- Bring the water to a rolling boil. Now add the boiling water to the mash and let it cool down completely.
- Now is the time to seal the fermenter and vent.
- Keep the liquid in a warm dark place again. Leave it there for 10 to 12 days.
- Pour the liquid through a double-layered pillow case, to remove all solids and impurities.
How to Make Rye - Barley Whiskey
- Rye, 7 lbs.
- Barley, 2 lbs.
- Malt, 1 lbs.
- Yeast, 3 gram
- Ammonium-fluoride, 1 gram
- Water, 6 gallons
- Bring the water to a rolling boil.
- When the water boils, add rye, barley and malt.
- Heat the water in such a manner that the temperature will rise by 5° F, every 2 minutes as you continue to stir the mixture.
- Keep the temperature stable at 160° F and stir constantly for 2-3 hours. This process will convert starch into fermentable sugar and dextrin.
- Use any filtration device to filter the liquid.
- Then pour the liquid into the fermentation device.
- Let the liquid cool down to 70-80 ° F.
- Add yeast to the liquid.
- Subsequently, add ammonium-fluoride as it will make sure that there is no secondary fermentation and contamination.
- After adding yeast and ammonium-fluoride, stir well for a couple of minutes.
- Now cover the liquid and seal in an airlock casket.
- It will take about 7 to 9 days to ferment.
- After the fermentation process is complete, filter the liquid through a pillow case to remove all solids and impurities. You can age the whiskey further to get a more mature flavor.
If you are fond of sour whiskey, you will have to use a sour mix for the same. The process mentioned in this article is the general procedure. You can also let the beverage ferment for a longer time, according to your taste.