I feel the need to have some sort of goal in 2017 for the Nerd Section of the iLaddie Blog. So as I am writing this I will formulate some To Do’s for 2017.
The goals I had set for 2016 included:
- Finding out the influence of Sherry / Port (previous content)
- Finding out the influence of different type of Casks (wood)
- Finding out the different production processes
- Finding out where the different congeners come from in the production process
I have learned so much in the past year, but I am far from done with these points. I still need to taste more sherry, port, rum, bourbon to get a better feel for identifying the influences on the whisky.
I am still maturing my own whisky as an experiment. I took 100 ml samples at different periods in time.
I will taste and compare ones the whisky reaches 6 month maturation. Above you can “clearly” see the influence of only 4 weeks on a new make spirit. You can read about al this in this blog entry.
What will I do in 2017?
- I will use all the tastes and smells mentioned in the Revised Scotch Flavour Wheel and make a description of where the flavour / smell / influence comes from. This will result in a maximum of 168 blogs, since there are 168 influences mentioned in the wheel. Blogs with this content will be tagged #RSWFW. I won’t say I will finish this task in 2017!
- I will try to find out what the relationship is between the alcohol ABV % of a liquid and how a difference in % influences the interactions between that liquid and the wood of the cask. In short, does 10, 15, 40, 60, 80%, 99,6% alcohol influence the chemical processes and process speeds? My background as engineer tells me it should. So I will do this by reading paper and texts but also by doing an experiment, which brings me to point 3.
- Do an experiment to demonstrate point 2. I plan to cut pieces of French Oak into small staves and charr them in an identical way. I have 100 ml bottles I can stick them in and then I will add different ABV liquids to the bottles. I will use pure laboratory grade alcohol to do so, not a ready made spirit. I will also use distilled water for this experiment. In this way I get only the influence of water and alcohol on the wood.
- As a fun experiment I will choose one dram, buy about 1.4 liters of it. Than fill 1.3 liters in the cask I have and let it mature for a time. Then compare to the 100ml I held back so you get a before and after. Which dram I will choose? Give me feedback on which one you would suggest. Preferably a malt-driven spirit.
Why do I do this?
Because it’s fun!
The points 2 and 3 are very not well documented in textbooks and papers (if it is well documented then I may have been looking in the wrong places. If you know where, please tell me!) and I want to find out if a low alcohol liquids like sherry leaves enough wood congeners behind to prove or disprove a Thesis I postulated in a previous blog.