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In order to understand the entire process of making moonshine, it will be useful if you will take a look at creating bourbon. You do not have to recall everything from the start because you can begin with the step where you have a bigger amount of spirit that results from the middle of the second run. In the process, you will have smaller vessels that were gathered towards the final round of the pass. What you can do is to take a sample of the contents of every vessel by putting a small amount f each in a separate shot gloss and taking a taste. In order to create a perfect mix, you can use the half water, half spirit ratio. This is a good way to identify the taste of the alcohol in different stages without dying of alcohol intoxication. It is highly advisable not to drink the alcohol straight from the shot glass as it can cause death in worst cases.
As you taste the samples of the various vessels, you will realize that the ones collected at a later time have more flavour than those collected early in time. The whole idea why you have to do this is to modify the flavour of your spirits so that it will suit your palate perfectly. Hence, if you have gathered a total of five vessels, you can taste them all and see if the first and second have distinguished taste. If none, these can be returned to the larger vessel. At this point, you ma like the taste of the third and the fourth, but you might find the fifth vessel have less desirable taste and can be thrown away. The ones that have pleasant taste can be diluted to 50/50 water so that you can come up with a spirit that has a desirable taste. In this way, you can achieve the spirit that best suits your tastes. Once you are happy with the flavours, what you can do is to determine its concentration and see if it is already appropriate for consumption. Preferably, it is best to have a 45% alcohol that is 90 proof. It is not recommended to have a spirit that is 65 % strong.
In order to accomplish the entire process, your bourbon must be aged using a charred oak cast or similar item in a specific period of time until you are satisfied with the taste. Aging it in oak cask will enhance its sweetness as its sugar contents can caramelize during the aging or charring process. The oak also contributes to the over-all flavour apart from the sweetness that can be tasted in your bourbon. Though a great number will no hurry and buy a 500 litre bottle of bourbon for a variety of reasons. One reason is that the quantities of bourbon created by a home distiller would not be enough to moisten the base of the cask. There are absolutely smaller casks that can hold 2 litres that can be bought from specialist manufacturers. Though this is the case, using charred oak chips instead of a cask is more recommended for beginners. The final product can be almost the same with that of a barrel without much expense. Also, the spirit can be ready for drinking in less time too.
If you are wondering where you can get oak chips, you can check with your local home brewer store and shop from a variety of types and styles. Some of these are entirely new chips while some are wooden chips out from used aging barrels. You can use whatever you want, but you have to remember that used wood chips have lesser capacities to age your spirit than new ones. You can follow the instructions in the woodchip packets and add these to your spirit according the recommended amounts. If there are no instructions included in the packet, you may start with 10 grams of wood chips in a litre of spirit which is a good starting point. Using plastic or glass container or demijohn is a good place to keep your spirit during the aging process. However, you must take note that once you have placed the chips in the demijohn, it will be hard to get them out of these containers. You can also benefit from using the same container again and again although it may take more time to age, but it is all worth the wait because the resulting product is of excellent quality.
The good thing about woodchips is that it can age the spirit at a rapid rate most preferably within a period of 10 days. For better results, you can take a few samples while it is aging and see how the aging is progressing. It is also essential to keep in a cool and dry environment for maximum aging. Once you are happy with the final product, all you have to so is to remove the oaks and splinters using a filter and let it sit for a little more time, most preferable a month. There is no period on how long you want to keep your bourbon once the wood chips have been removed because the aging process has halted at this point.