Articles Relating to Spirit Recipes by Distillique

The section for Home Distillers looking for Inspiration, Ideas and Recipes to try.

PLEASE NOTE: Recipes in this section is for Home Distilling only and not necessarily suitable or legal for Commercial Distilling. Most of these recipes were also not developed by Distillique, but contributed by clients or other third parties. Distillique therefore cannot accept any responsibility for the accuracy or quality of the recipes.

How do I Clone a Commercial Spirit Product?

The short answer is that you can't. There are too many variables involved in making a spirit product, and if you do not control each of these variables exactly, you will not get the same quality product. If we just look at some of the variables involved in whisky production, you would need to know (and have access too):

  • The same Raw Material (type of grain and cultivar)
  • The same Enzyme Source (type, quality and treatment)
  • The same Conversion Protocol (conversion temperatures and time periods)
  • The same Yeast Strain 
  • The same Fermentation Protocol (temperature range, pH, starting and target SG levels)
  • The same Still Type(s) (and the methodology in running it, vapor temperatures, %ABV for cuts)
  • The same Barrel Types (size, wood, treatment of wood, previous use)
  • The same Barrel Aging Area (temperature, humidity, air pressure, time in barrel)

And even with ALL this information, you still won't get it right, because the fact is that you will never be able to replicate or clone the decisions and choices made by the Distiller and Blenders, and let us not forget that most commercial products are blended from many different barrels or batches in order to achieve a consistent flavor profile, and as a Home or Craft Distiller, you will not have access to that.

Many Home "Distillers" use essences to achieve this - just making a Neutral Spirit base (normally from Sugar) and then they add a "Black Label Whisky" essence, or "Dark Jamaican Rum" essence to that (basically) Vodka that they have made, but then claiming you DISTILLED a Whisky or Rum is an insult to actual Distillers.

The question you need to ask yourself is "Why would you want to Clone another person's product?" If you actually do manage to clone Jack Daniels (as an example) 100%, then the best thing anyone could ever say about your product is "WOW! This tastes just like Jack Daniels!"

What's the point?

Be daring, be original and use the recipes in this section as a guide to get you started, and get you experimenting.

Can I just do anything I want in a Spirit?

As a Home or Hobby Distiller, anything goes. Just one rule - don't poison anyone. 

As a Commercial or Craft Distiller, or a Home Distiller doing product development, you are limited by what you are allowed to do in your spirit product by Legislation. In South Africa, this will be the National Liquor Products Act Regulations, where the Spirit Category determines what Raw Materials and Processes you are allowed to use in the manufacturing of the Product, and Table 6, determines what Substances you are allowed to add to the product after distillation.

30 articles in the category:  Recipes

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