What makes spirits? Part 1: Grain

Vodka is the most popular alcoholic drink among Russians. Legends about who and where invented vodka - darkness. At one forum, I even read the statement that Jews invented vodka. Immediately the author of the statement was twice illiterately refuted, saying that vodka was invented by no non-Jews, but by the Russian scientist Mendeleev. First, Mendeleev is still considered anti-Semitic and sobriety fighters to be a Jew, although he is a great Russian scientist, and secondly, he did not invent vodka. He only established how to calculate the strength of vodka by its density.

To my great surprise, historians suggest that she comes from Italy. But it got accustomed and became a pride in Russia and other Slavic states. True, in other countries it is called differently. It was invented as a pain reliever. And then she poured balsam on the soul of millions of people.

The basis of vodka is a choice: grain, sugar beet, different types of wheat, from which they get grain, beet, wheat spirit, and its majesty water. Manufacturers add a couple of magic spells, and firewater is already on the shelves of our store. In different countries, vodka is based on different raw materials, as they say, “the more they are rich, the more they are happy”. The main thing is that the alcohol from this natural wealth is obtained and the water was softer. So, nothing intricate, but the effectiveness of firewater does not fail.

Vodka takes different colors. In the classic moonshine version, it looks hazy, in beige shades, but with current cleaning technologies it can be more transparent than a stream in the mountains. If you add honey and pepper (mead, pepper vodka) to it - it will shine with golden colors.

Whiskey - the subject of rivalry Scotland, Ireland and the United States. It is produced on the basis of various kinds of cereals, using different technologies. Depending on the base, it takes on a color from light yellow to tea.

In Scotland, barley malt and barley itself are used as raw materials for whiskey. They say that there these cereals have a special taste. In Ireland, rye is added to barley malt, which makes Irish whiskey brown. In the USA and Canada, corn, rye, and wheat are used for the same purposes. The same bourbon that Delon does not drink was invented in America, in the province of Bourbon, and it is obtained from corn, and not from barley.

Among the admirers of whiskey it is customary to mix different sorts of the drink, for the sake of getting a unique taste. Whiskey lovers fall in love with its rich taste for a long time and rarely change it.

Jean comes from the Netherlands, but is proud of him in England. This is a strong drink, not for wimps. It is so tough that not every drinker will dare to drink it in its pure form. Gin, like other spirits, is made on the basis of wheat, but unlike other “sturdy”, juniper is added to it during production. Gin, as a rule, is transparent, like vodka. Natural additives are often added to it (lemon peel, cinnamon, coriander), which can tint up this crystal clear drink. Since in its pure form it is used quite rarely, it is considered to be the king of cocktails.

Sake is the pride of Japan. We call it rice vodka. Sometimes - rice wine. But in fact it is not vodka or wine. Sake is not distilled like vodka, and it is not a product of fermented grape juice, like wine. Sake is produced by fermentation, i.e., fermentation of rice. So, in essence, this is rice rice.

As a rule, this drink does not differ in a variety of colors, keeping fidelity to a yellowish shade. It is interesting only because it can be drunk both hot and chilled, and the difference in its strength sometimes reaches 20-30 degrees. Unlike vodka, which, whatever one may say, retains its 40 degrees (although this was not always the case), sake is of different strength, sometimes not higher than 10–20 degrees.

The product of distillation sake is called a network. Its fortress reaches 40 degrees. As an additive in the manufacture of the network using various crops, sweet potatoes, sugar, molasses and even mushrooms. But the base of it, like the base of sake, is rice malt.

Sake is a fairly famous drink. But who heard about the Maotai Chinese rice vodka? But she is more than two thousand years old! Like many elite drinks, this vodka is rigidly tied to the locality. It can be produced only from rice grown in the area of ​​Maotai. The unique taste and aroma of vodka depends on the soil, temperature, humidity and many other environmental parameters. And also on the features of the technology, but it is not easy - the full production cycle of Maotai vodka lasts five years.

Bambuse - vodka made from bamboo grains. Produce it, of course, where bamboo grows in incredible quantities - in Indonesia. This is not to say that this vodka is of high quality - because it is not purified from harmful impurities, including methyl alcohol. And since it can cause hallucinations, it is not used as a national drink, and is drunk only on special holidays as part of religious ceremonies.

To be continued…

Watch the video: See The Amazing Distillation Process, From Grain To Spirit At The Cardrona Distillery - Part 1 (January 2020).

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