How to Flavor Moonshine and Age it While Keeping it Clear

One of the exciting parts in learning how to moonshine is adding flavors that greatly enhance the taste of your moonshine.  When moonshine is flavored it resembles commercial spirits much closer.

You can produce moonshine with various products such as bourbon, vodka, whiskey what not and many more. All of these have undergone some kind of flavoring and a lot of aging in order to achieve the final product.

Your Brewing Methods and Ingredients Can Affect the Taste

The taste and smell of the finished product also depend on the raw materials used in the process. One of the most important parts of making a flavor-rich moonshine is the production method you use.

The character of your final product relies on how you take control of the distillation such as making cuts out of your fermented wash.

Use A Quality Moonshine Still Kit To Make the Perfect Spirits Every Time

If you are using a cheap or homemade still, your result can vary quite a lot because these DIY kits never give you quite as much control over the production methods and your result will be different every time which makes it hard to create spirits with a distinct taste.  With a quality still, you will have more control over everything from the temperature to the barrel pressure level.  By applying precise ingredients and methods, you can produce spirits with the perfect alcohol level and taste every time.

The 5 Gallon Stainless Steel Stove Top Moonshine Still Kit – The Best Moonshine Kit to Buy

If you are looking for a great moonshine still kit then we recommend you consider the 5 Gallon Stainless Steel Stove Top Moonshine Still kit.  This kit includes everything you need for making your own moonshine and the kit can be used to make a variety of other beverages as well. 

The kit includes a fermentation barrel and distillation tower as well as a water pump and all internal accessories.  The kettle is mostly made of food-grade 304 Stainless Steel which is highly durable and not very likely to rust or discolor any time soon. 

The fermentation barrel can be used on top of any type of stove including induction, gas and electric cooktops.  The barrel has a one-way pressure relief valve and comes with a 3-piece clamp hoop that ensures that your barrel is properly sealed.  It also has a false bottom that keeps your product away from the barrel base and protects these ingredients from settling on the bottom.

The distillation tower has stainless steel cooling coils that are submerged inside a chamber that needs to be filled with cold water.  A copper cooling coil would have been more preferable but stainless steel tubes will also do the job when liquid condensates inside the cool chamber. 

You also get a 120V water pump with this set.  This water pump can be submerged into a bucket and allows you to continuously add cooled water to the distillation tower so you can cool down your still effectively inside the tower.

 A moonshine kit is an ideal tool for beginners and for anyone who wants to perfect the taste of their moonshine.

Specifications

Main materials – 304 Food grade stainless steel

Size – 32 x 32 x 46cm (75cm assembly height)

Still type – Stovetop still with fermentation barrel and distillation tower

Barrel capacity – 5 gallons

Coil materials – Stainless steel

Suited for – Make moonshine as well as other types of alcoholic beverages

Included – Fermentation barrel with false bottom and distillation tower, water pump, filter bag, two 1.5m silicone tubes, 3-in-1 alcohol meter, thread seal tape, 250ml measuring cylinder, temperature sticker, and airlock and silicone stopper.

Pros

  • The kit comes with everything you need for home brewing
  • You can use it on any type of cooktop or stove
  • The 5 gallon barrel is ideal for making 3 – 4 liters of spirits at a time
  • The kit is made of high quality 304 stainless steel that will never rust or discolor
  • The fermentation barrel has air tight locks to seal it properly
  • The fermentation barrel also has a one way valve
  • A false bottom in the fermentation barrel keeps liquids off the base of the barrel
  • You also get a 120 water pump with the kit
  • The set includes an alcohol meter

Cons

  • Copper coils in the distillation tower would have been better
  • It can be hard to remove spent grain from your fermentation barrel
Different Ways to Modify the Taste of Your Moonshine

Moonshiners use many different techniques to adjust or fine-tune the taste of their products.

Here is a quick look at some of the best and easiest ways to create a more unique and distinct moonshine whiskey.

Aging Moonshine Can Enhance Its Taste

Aging your spirits can make a huge difference in the taste of your spirits.  This is exactly why so many brewers store their products in barrels for years before offering it for sale on the market. 

Although it is a fact that the flavored spirit can be consumed right on the very same day it is distilled, many distillers suggest that you will benefit a lot if you let your spirit sit in the bottle for one month or more in a dark place which enhances its taste.  If you follow this simple technique, your bourbons and wines can be sweeter and more refined.

Aging Moonshine with Wood Chips Can Improve Its Taste

In case you create a scotch whiskey, letting it age will make your product more scotch like. To create excellent bourbon you can let your neutral spirit age in oak chips for about 15 days using 15 grams of oak chips in one liter of spirit.

If you worry about acquiring the taste of wood in your finished product, you can taste a sample of your spirit aged at 10 days and see how it tastes and just do the same thing in an interval or 1-2 days. By doing this, you will find that the taste of your bourbon is just perfect on day 15 or 16.

Just in case that you would like to come up with dark rum, you can modify the technique mentioned above by soaking your spirit in oak chips at 10 grams per liter of spirit for a period of 15 to 20 days. You should wait for at least 10 days before you can take out a sample using a shot glass so that you can avoid consuming it all. This will help you gauge the flavor earlier in time.

You must be aware that leaving it for a long time can cause a woody flavor so you have to make a wise judgment. Once you are satisfied with the flavors that the oak chips have given your drink, you can now remove the wood chips and start filtering your spirit to eliminate splinters.

How Commercial Brewers Flavor Spirits

Commercially produced spirits are usually stored in wooden casks or to enhance the taste of the spirits.  Some commercial brewers allow their products to sit for a minimum of one year where others may choose to age their products for many years which increase both the taste and price of the product.

The type of wood you use for aging your spirits can also affect its taste.  For instance, scotch whiskey is usually kept in sherry cask to combine the different flavors of sherry, sugars present in the wood as well as the distinct flavor of the whiskey. The resulting product is quite unique and more flavorful.

If you will take a look at commercial whiskey products, you will find that the age is about three to eight years and even twelve. You may also begin to wonder why your spirit soaked with oak chips to achieve aging takes only a few days instead of years.

The answer greatly depends on the surface area of the oak wood chips that come in contact with a certain amount of spirit. Essentially, the surface area of the oak chips is greater than that of the barrel which makes the exchange of flavor more rapid.

Using Fresh Wood Chips Is Ideal For Enhancing Taste

New wood can age spirit more than old wood does. It is recommended to use fresh wood chips rather than the old one because your spirit can have a woody taste if the chips are very old and this can negatively affect the flavor of your finished product

Sweet Bourbon Essence Can Also Enhance Your Flavor

To intensify the taste, even more, you can filter it in a muslin cloth and include the sweet bourbon essence into it. After this, you can proceed with bottling the product into 700g bottles which should be stored in a cool dark place for one month or more. With this, you can achieve bourbon that is smooth and mellow to drink.

Avoid Using a Carbon Filter

You must not filter it using a carbon filter to remove wood chips because it will only remove much of its flavor which makes you lose all your efforts. Using a muslin or tea towel is highly recommended in this case so that you can retain all the flavors that you would like to keep. You may also try a coffee filter which may take slowly compared to muslin, but it is really quite effective too.

Adding sugar can also adjust the taste of your moonshine

To add final touches, you can add 5 teaspoons of caramelized raw or white sugar per liter of your spirit. You can add additional sugar if you want it sweeter because your final product will greatly depend on your taste buds.