What does aging do to moonshine?
Why are Spirits Aged? – Aging spirits is done to achieve the desired flavor and taste from the liquor. After distillation, the raw spirit needs to be refined. This is done through the wood barrel. The goal of aging is to remove harsh flavors from the raw alcohol, while adding specific flavor characteristics found in the wood barrel.
- Aging does allow for some of the undesired flavors to “burn off”, but mainly barrel aging gives time for the ethanol itself to break down the charred wood sugar, which imparts the smokiness and sweetness in aged spirits.
- It’s easy to taste the difference between a spirit that has only aged 5 years and one that has been aged 20.
At Eight Oaks, we age a minimum of two years, with barrels set aside for four year vintages. Eventually we’ll have six and eight year vintages. At two years old you can have a dark whiskey with tons of flavor, it just doesn’t have the depth of flavor or mouth feel that an older vintage would have.
How does ageing affect the spirit?
How Does Barrel Aging Alcohol Work? – Aging refers to the process of storing distilled spirits in barrels for a specified period of time. The objective of aging or maturation is to eliminate harsh flavours from the raw alcohol while incorporating a distinct taste and aroma derived from properties found in the barrel’s wood.
- When the alcohol is poured into the barrel, it is relatively colourless and flavourless.
- During its stay in the barrel, the alcohol will gradually take flavour and colour from the wood, which explains why some liquors, such as whisky and brandy, have a warm and amber hue.
- In contrast, clear alcohols, like vodka, lack colour because they weren’t aged.
For optimal flavour, colour, and aroma, spirits are typically aged for approximately 3 years.
Does aging alcohol make it stronger?
Does Alcohol Content Increase With Aging? – Alcohol content can increase with aging. If spirits, wine, or beer are aged in barrels at high temperatures, the water in the mixtures can evaporate and penetrate the barrel’s wood. If water molecules escape from the barrel, the mixture becomes less diluted and more alcoholic.
- As spirits, wine, or beer sit and age in barrels, the alcohol content will typically increase, but only slightly.
- This is because ethanol molecules, also known as ethyl alcohol, are fairly large molecules that have difficulty penetrating the barrels’ wood.
- Ethanol is the alcoholic part of your aged beverages, so the ethanol’s inability to escape the barrel means that alcoholic liquids are unlikely to decrease in alcohol content if stored in a barrel.
The alcohol content may, however, increase, but only if the barrel is stored in a hot climate. Water molecules are much smaller than ethanol molecules, so they can penetrate the wood and will be inclined to do so when the pressure inside the barrel gets to be too much.
In hot temperatures, the liquid expands and increases in volume. This, in turn, increases the pressure inside the barrels, and the water molecules will escape through the wood because they are small enough to do so. This means that the liquid left behind contains the same amount of ethanol molecules as when it was barreled because those cannot escape; however, it will have fewer water molecules.
In other words, the alcohol is less diluted, which means its volume percentage will be increased. For this reason, alcoholic beverages that are aged in hot climates, such as Texas or Arizona, are typically higher proof than alcohol from other areas. Some manufacturers and home brewers add water to their alcohol when they remove it from the barrel and before bottling to counteract this.
How does aging affect alcohol?
The size of the older adult population is increasing rapidly. Alcohol use among older adults is also increasing, Data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health indicate that approximately 20 percent of adults aged 60-64 and around 11 percent over age 65 report current binge drinking. Older adults can experience a variety of problems from drinking alcohol, especially those who:
Take certain medications Have health problems Drink heavily
There are special considerations facing older adults who drink, including: Increased Sensitivity to Alcohol Aging can lower the body’s tolerance for alcohol. Older adults generally experience the effects of alcohol more quickly than when they were younger.
Diabetes High blood pressure Congestive heart failure Liver problems Osteoporosis Memory problems Mood disorders
Bad Interactions with Medications Many prescription and over-the-counter medications, as well as herbal remedies can be dangerous or even deadly when mixed with alcohol. Medications that can interact badly with alcohol include:
Aspirin Acetaminophen Cold and allergy medicine Cough syrup Sleeping pills Pain medication Anxiety or depression medicine
Guidelines for Alcohol Consumption Developed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture, the dietary guidelines provide recommendations on what the average American should eat and drink to promote health and help prevent chronic disease.
Plan to drive or operate machinery, or participate in activities that require skill, coordination, and alertness Take certain over-the-counter or prescription medications Have a medical condition that can be worsened by alcohol Are recovering from AUD or are unable to control the amount they drink
What does aging whiskey do?
What is whiskey aging? – Once the liquor is distilled, it is put into barrels. Long periods of ageing eliminate harsh flavours from the raw alcohol and allow the whiskey to actually extract flavour and colour from the wood. The type of barrel used for maturation is usually determined by the master blender, who seeks to achieve a particular character and maintain the style the distillery is known for.