Distiller's Yeast Tips

Distiller's Yeast Tips

Our Turbo Yeast is a fantastic product that will produce neutral, smooth alcohol for use with our range of Spirit Essences.

However, for those looking to ferment with genuine yeast strains when making Whiskey, Rum or Vodka, then it may be better to use our range of Distiller's Yeast to ensure the correct compounds are formed during fermentation. 

Distiller's Yeasts:

Whiskey Our Whiskey Distillery Yeast is a pure culture Whiskey Strain of Saccharomyces Cerevisiae used widely in commercial whiskey, with robust and authentic aromatics even in high-alcohol fermentations.

Vodka Our Vodka Distillery Yeast is a high yield Vodka Strain with extraordinarily low metabolite production ideal for use with sugar, grain or potato feedstock in Vodka or other white spirit production.

Rum - Our Rum Distillery Yeast is an Osmophilic Saccharomyces Cerevisiae strain that helps produce fruit esters and aromas through an optimum congener profile.

Our three Distiller's Yeasts contain the same advanced nutrition found in our Turbo Yeasts, allowing them to ferment effectively without producing the unwanted compounds produced due to yeast stress that would affect the alcohol.

They also use heat tolerant Alpha Amylase for converting the complex starch into sugar during the boil and importantly contain Amyloglucosidase Enzyme, that converts long chain sugars left over from the mash into fermentable glucose.

Three ways to use Distillery Yeasts:

  1. With Pure Sugar – use 7 kg (15 lb) dextrose, you will achieve a different flavour and aroma profile more specific to type using this yeast.
  2. With 2 kg Extracts - replacing 1.5 kg (3.3 lb) of the sugar with 2 kg (4.4 lb) of the relevant extract (malt for whisky, wheat for vodka or molasses for Rum) will transform your spirit quality. Wherever possible this is the preferred route securing all the benefits to spirit character and aroma possible.
  3. With starch raw materials - for the serious enthusiast, go back to the original starch source for the ultimate in quality and open up a new world of experimenting to create your own individual spirit style. For this option, you will need to also purchase the 4 g (0.2 oz) HT Alpha Amylase sachet. Still Spirits is about achieving high quality spirits without the inconvenience and time investment of traditional spirit making. Decades of research and development has gone into the range of Still Spirits Yeasts, carbons, absorbents, clarifiers and essences making it possible to produce excellent commercial quality spirits.

    Which sugar to use?

    All recipes should contain an element of added pure sugar - always use dextrose (brewing or corn sugar) where possible. Ordinary white sugar (sucrose) can be used but will lead to increased acetaldehyde levels which carry across sour fruit aromas through the distillation and into the end spirit.

    Making Vodka

    With Pure Sugar:

    This will produce a clean vodka and most will find they prefer, than those made with extracts or traditional starch materials. So if there is one yeast in the Distiller's series that should use pure dextrose sugar, then this is the one.

    Instructions

    1. Start with 21 L (5.5 US Gal) of 30°C (86°F) water in your clean fermenter.
    2. Add 6 kg (13 lb) dextrose and stir to dissolve, you will now have 25 L (6.6 US Gal) volume.
    3. Add Still Spirits Turbo Carbon to absorb impurities produced by the yeast during fermentation.
    4. Add the Vodka Yeast and leave to ferment for 7 days at ideally 18 – 22°C. Lower temperatures are fine down to 15°C (59°F) but will double fermentation time. Higher temperatures should be avoided if possible because will increase off-flavour and aroma production of the yeast.
    5. After fermentation, add Still Spirits Turbo Clear to remove impurities. It’s important that the wash doesn’t sit on the spent yeast and solids for more than 24 hours. So distil the wash 1 day after adding Turbo clear even if still not completely clear.
    6. Distil the clear wash after siphoning off the sediment. Use the Still Spirits Turbo 500 still to produce alcohol at between 90% and 93% ABV ideally running for 5 hours rather than 3 or 4 hours to maximise purity. (Operating temperature will be about 55°C – 60°C (131 - 140°F))
    7. Once you’ve collected your distillate, dilute to 50% ABV with good quality water then filter through a Still Spirits Carbon Filter.
    8. Dilute to 40% ABV with good quality water, bottle and leave for at least 1 week but ideally for 1 month.

    With 5 kg (11 lb) Potatoes:

    Will produce a smooth potato vodka very similar in style to the award winning Chase Vodka. It is made from potatoes with nearly the exact the same ingredients as our Vodka Distiller's Yeast and Still Spirits Turbo Carbon.

    Instructions

    1. Peel and slice 4 kg (8.8 lb) potatoes, then cover with water and bring to 70°C (158°F). Add contents of the Still Spirits 4 g amylase sachet and hold approximate temperature for 6 - 8 hours or overnight. Remove from heat then add 4.5 kg (9.9 lb) dextrose, stir to dissolve and allow to cool to between 50 – 60°C (122 - 140°F).
    2. Transfer the entire contents into a fermentation bucket (no need to strain) then top up to 25 L (6.6 US Gal) with cold water, stir to mix and allow to cool to below 25°C (77°F).
    3. Add Still Spirits Turbo Carbon to absorb impurities produced by the yeast during fermentation.
    4. Add the Vodka Yeast and leave to ferment for 7 days at ideally 18 – 22°C (64 - 71°F). Lower temperatures are fine down to 15°C (59°F) but will double fermentation time. Higher temperatures should be avoided if possible because will increase off-flavour and aroma production of the yeast. Using any starch source will create excessive foaming so place somewhere appropriate and don’t use an airlock (just rest fermenter lid loosely on bucket). During fermentation the AG enzyme (already contained within the Vodka Yeast sachet) will finish the job of converting the starch into fermentable sugars to maximise your yield.
    5. After fermentation, add Still Spirits Turbo Clear to remove impurities. It’s important that the wash doesn’t sit on the spent yeast and solids for more than 24 hours. So distil the wash 1 day after adding Turbo clear even if still not completely clear.
    6. Distil the clear wash after siphoning off the sediment. For potato vodka, use our T500 and run for only 2 - 3 hours as to produce alcohol at between 84% and 88% ABV which is a lower alcoholic strength. (Operating temperature will be about 65°C (149°F))
    7. Once you’ve collected your distillate, dilute to 50% ABV with good quality water then hold for three days in a 10 L (2.6 US Gal) bucket adding one further sachet of Still Spirits Turbo Carbon. Stir twice daily then allow the activated carbon to settle on day 3 before fine filtering. Do not pass through activated carbon column filter as this will remove too much of the character from your vodka.
    8. Dilute to 40% ABV with good quality water, bottle and leave for at least 1 month.
    9. For a rich, full-bodied, complex vodka with a distinctive grain character. Follow instructions exactly as above but use 4 kg (8.8 lb) crushed wheat grain or whole wheat flakes instead of 4 kg (8.8 lb) potatoes except ensure a 10 L (2.6 US Gal) boil volume otherwise the liquid will be too thick when it reaches the ‘gelation point’ at around 70°C (158°F).

    Making Rum

    By far the best quality and tasting rum will be made using molasses as a base.

    With 2 kg (4.4 lb) Molasses:

    Will produce rich rum flavour similar in style to those dark rums found in Malaysia.

    Instructions

    1. Add 2 kg (4.4 lb) molasses and 4.5 kg (9.9 lb) dextrose into your clean fermenter with 3 L (0.8 US Gal) boiling water, stir to mix (don’t worry if doesn’t dissolve at this stage). Top up to 25 L (6.6 US Gal) with cold water, stir to completely dissolve.
    2. Add Still Spirits Turbo Carbon to absorb impurities produced by the yeast during fermentation.
    3. Add the Rum Yeast and leave to ferment for 7 days at ideally 22 – 28°C (71 - 82°F). Lower temperatures are fine down to 15°C (59°F) but will double fermentation time. Higher temperatures will increase flavour and aroma production of the yeast. Using molasses will create excessive foaming so place somewhere appropriate and don’t use an airlock (just rest fermenter lid loosely on bucket).
    4. After fermentation, add Still Spirits Turbo Clear to remove impurities. It’s important that the wash doesn’t sit on the spent yeast and solids for more than 24 hours. So distil the wash 1 day after adding Turbo clear even if still not completely clear.
    5. Distil the clear wash after siphoning off the sediment. For rum, use our T500 and run for only 2 - 3 hours as to produce alcohol at between 84% and 88% ABV which is a lower alcoholic strength. (Operating temperature will be about 68°C (154°F)). 
    6. For a richer flavour you can try using the Still Spirits Alembic Pot Still and follow the products instructions.
    7. Once you’ve collected your distillate, dilute to 50% ABV with good quality water then hold for three days in a 10 L (2.6 US Gal) bucket adding one further sachet of Turbo Carbon. Stir twice daily then allow the activated carbon to settle on day 3 before fine filtering. Do not pass through activated carbon column filter as this will remove too much of the character from your rum.
    8. Dilute to 40% ABV with good quality water, bottle and leave to smooth for at least 1 month. For an quick and effective result, add one of our Still Spirits Classic Rum Essences.

    Making Whisky

    With Pure Sugar:

    This method requires Still Spirits Classic Whiskey Essences to be used as flavour. During fermentation our Distiller's Whisky Yeast produces the perfect compound set to promote authentic whiskey aroma and character providing a great distillate base for use with Still Spirits Classic Whiskey essences.

    Instructions

    1. Add 7 kg (15 lb) dextrose into your clean fermenter with 3 L (0.8 US Gal) boiling water, stir to mix (don’t worry if doesn’t dissolve at this stage). Top up to 25 L (6.6 US Gal) with cold water, stir to completely dissolve.
    2. Add Still Spirits Turbo Carbon to absorb impurities produced by the yeast during fermentation.
    3. Add the Whisky Yeast and leave to ferment for 7 days at ideally 22 – 28°C. Lower temperatures are fine down to 15°C but will double fermentation time. Higher temperatures will increase flavour and aroma production of the yeast.
    4. After fermentation, add Still Spirits Turbo Clear to remove impurities. It’s important that the wash doesn’t sit on the spent yeast and solids for more than 24 hours. So distil the wash 1 day after adding Turbo clear even if still not completely clear.
    5. Distil the clear wash after siphoning off the sediment. For whiskey, use our T500 and run for only 2 - 3 hours as to produce alcohol at between 84% and 88% ABV which is a lower alcoholic strength. (Operating temperature will be about 68°C (154°F)). 
    6. For a richer flavour you can try using the Still Spirits Alembic Pot Still and follow the products instructions.
    7. Once you’ve collected your distillate, dilute to 50% ABV with good quality water then hold for three days in a 10 L (0.8 US Gal) bucket adding one further sachet of Turbo Carbon. Stir twice daily then allow the activated carbon to settle on day 3 before fine filtering. Do not pass through activated carbon column filter as this will remove too much of the character from your rum.
    8. Dilute to 40% ABV with good quality water, bottle and leave to smooth for at least 1 month. Finally add one of the Classic Whiskey Essences.
    9. Alternatively you can try using extract from our Single Malt Whiskey Distillery Kit to make a superb whisky. Make exactly as above whisky ‘with pure sugar’ method except reduce the dextrose from 6 to 5 kg (11 lb).

    From Grains:

    A variety of grains can be used to make whiskey the traditional way and each will impart a different flavour profile, so feel free to experiment!

    Instructions

    1. All grains used must be crushed or finely cracked. Add 4 kg (8.8 lb) grain into a suitable large pan and add cold water to final volume of 10 L (0.8 US Gal) then bring to the boil. Add contents of the Still Spirits 4 g amylase sachet (do not use standard brewers amylase because it won’t be temperature tolerant) and gently simmer for 30 minutes stirring frequently. Remove from heat then add 4.5 kg (9.9 lb) dextrose, stir to dissolve and allow to cool to between 50 - 60°C (122 - 140°F).
    2. Transfer the entire contents into a fermentation bucket (no need to strain) then top up to 25 L (6.6 US Gal) with cold water, stir to mix and allow to cool to below 25°C (77°F).
    3. Add Still Spirits Turbo Carbon to absorb impurities produced by the yeast during fermentation.
    4. Add the Whisky Yeast and leave to ferment for 7 days at ideally 22 - 28°C (71 - 82°F). Higher temperatures should be avoided. Using grain will create excessive foaming so place somewhere appropriate and don’t use an airlock (just rest fermenter lid loosely on bucket). During fermentation the AG enzyme (already contained within the Whisky Yeast sachet) will finish the job of converting the starch into fermentable sugars to maximise your yield.
    5. After fermentation, add Still Spirits Turbo Clear to remove impurities. It’s important that the wash doesn’t sit on the spent yeast and solids for more than 24 hours. So distil the wash 1 day after adding Turbo clear even if still not completely clear.
    6. Distil the cleared wash after siphoning off the sediment.
    7. It is important use our Alembic Pot Still here to ensure the distillate is between 60% and 75% ABV.
    8. Once you’ve collected your distillate, dilute to 50% ABV with good quality water then hold for three days in a 10 L (0.8 US Gal) bucket adding one further sachet of Turbo Carbon. Stir twice daily then allow the activated carbon to settle on day 3 before fine filtering. Do not pass through activated carbon column filter as this will remove too much of the character from your whisky.
    9. Dilute to 40% ABV with good quality water, bottle with oak chips, cubes or chunks to allow oak flavour development and leave to smooth for at least 3 months. The addition of a Still Spirits Whiskey Essence will also produce a much richer whiskey style.
    Previous article Making Essential Oils with the Alembic Pot Still
    Next article Grainfather Conical Fermenter Pressure Transfer Instructions

    Leave a comment

    Comments must be approved before appearing

    * Required fields