Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Homemade Spirits Part 3: Filtration

OK now you have several litres of your distilled spirit, but first you must filter it before drinking. This can be done through any carbon filter, I have a Still Spirits Filter, shown below.

The alcohol should be diluted down to 50% and added to the top bucket.

It will then drip down through the filter and into the lower bucket.

This is now perfectly drinkable spirit. It can be drunk as-is or flavoured with a myriad of flavour kits, such as Citrus Vodka and Butterscotch Schnapps

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Free as in beer

I got some free beer in the mail today - from a company calling itself Boundary Road Brewery. This appears to be Independent breweries under a different name, but what they're doing is a promotion where they select people to be amateur tasters of a new line of lager they're releasing. New Zealanders can sign up online, and if you get selected they'll send you 3 bottles in the post.

The site is
and it seems they still have places left for people so why not sign up? Free beer is good beer.

I've only had Style C so far, but I'm impressed at its taste, especially given that this is an Independent Breweries offering, they usually aim for more price conscious consumers.

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Homemade Spirits Part 2: Distillation

PLEASE NOTE: Home distillation may be illegal in your country - I live in NZ where the government allows this. Make sure you check local and/or federal laws before attempting to follow this procedure

Here is part 2 of my guide - the distillation part.

You should now have a fully fermented drum of alcohol wash - this should be added to your still and the lid tightly secured. Turn the element in the still on and wait for the thermometer to hit 50 degrees Celsius. You can now turn on the water running through your column. Once the thermometer reaches 78 degrees liquid will begin dripping from the column. This is methanol which must not be drunk and you should throw away the first ~100ml of distillate to ensure your alcohol is free of methanol.

Then you will be collecting delicious alcohol - it will be coming out around 85% depending on the type of still you have.

Here is a video of my still in action:

Once all the alcohol has been collected it can be filtered through a carbon filter, I will include this information in my next post.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Homemade Spirits Part 1 : Fermentation

PLEASE NOTE: Home distillation may be illegal in your country - I live in NZ where the government allows this. Make sure you check local and/or federal laws before attempting to follow this procedure

OK here's part 1 of the guide I promised - this part deals with fermentation. To make your own spirits, first you must ferment sugar to alcohol, then you must distill the mash into alcohol. Fermentation is achieved by mixing water, sugar and yeast together in a fermentation vessel, and keeping it relatively warm.

In this batch, I used ~7 KG of sugar, and 1 pack of Still Spirits Turbo Classic Yeast. The sugar was dissolved in hot water, then the yeast added once the 23L mix of water and sugar hit 30 degrees Celsius.

This is the batch as of now, 5 days after fermentation began.

It'll be ready to be distilled soon, so watch out for part 2 of this guide.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Making of Tactical Nuclear Penguin

Once the world's strongest beer, the process in which this beer is made is still very interesting.

Tactical Nuclear Penguin from BrewDog on Vimeo.

Spirits guide still coming, I have everything but the heat belt.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Just a quick update here. It's quite cool at the moment so I've ordered a heat belt in order to keep my brews at a reasonable temperature.

In a few days i will be posting my complete guide to fermenting and distilling your own alcohol for personal use.  (Please not this is completely legal in my country)

I'll get started on it as soon as my heat belt arrives


Tuesday, 24 May 2011

First double batch

I've heard good results can come from using 2 malt kits in a single size batch, to add a maltier base to the beer. Coopers Draught was the base kit here, and the European Lager the more flavourful kit. Hopefully it should produce a delicious hybrid.

Here it is, just waiting to hit a slightly lower temperature so I can ad the yeast and get this batch started! Should take around a week to ferment, as where I live is quite cold and beer kits take a while to ferment. I can't wait for this to finish and it's not even started!

That's all from me today, I'm off to drink some Harringtons East Indian Lager and relax.


Monday, 23 May 2011

My current equipment

What I have here:
2x 30L fermenting vessels (for both beer and spirits)
1 x 25L super reflux still

Planning a nice beer brew tonight from some kits, just to get started

First post and introduction

Hey guys, this is my first post on this blog so I'll start with an introduction. I'm an amateur beer brewer and spirits brewer located in good old New Zealand - one of the few countries in the world where it is fully legal to brew spirits for personal use.

I encourage everyone interested in brewing to follow my blog, and hopefully you'll pick up some tips along the way.

Thanks, and happy brewing.