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Josh
06-17-2010, 09:21
My visit to Grand Traverse Distillery got me thinking. One way they have of making money while their whiskeys age is selling small barrels and unaged spirit to go in them. so I wondered...

If I took a 10 ltr charred oak barrel and filled it with 7 liters of 100% corn spirit, 2 liters of 100% Rye spirit and 1 liter of 100% malted barley spirit, could I legally sell it as a bourbon?

matthew0715
06-17-2010, 10:12
My visit to Grand Traverse Distillery got me thinking. One way they have of making money while their whiskeys age is selling small barrels and unaged spirit to go in them. so I wondered...

If I took a 10 ltr charred oak barrel and filled it with 7 liters of 100% corn spirit, 2 liters of 100% Rye spirit and 1 liter of 100% malted barley spirit, could I legally sell it as a bourbon?

No, sir, you would be arrested as a moonshiner by the ATF for failing to get proper licenses and pay all the appropriate taxes, tariffs, etc.:bigeyes:

However, I don't think that was really your question. If Jim Beam (or Heaven Hill or Four Roses...) aged such a mixture as you described in new charred oak barrels, I believe the answer is no. As I read the regulations, (and I am not a lawyer FWIW) what you (or they) have in the barrel is blended whiskey (whiskey, a blend) and if it stays in the barrel for 2 years it becomes blended straight whiskey. What you have is 70% bourbon whiskey, 20% rye whiskey, and 10% malt whiskey. The fact that they are blended before aging rather than after doesn't change that fact.

If anyone disagrees, I'm now entertaining counter arguments.:grin:

p_elliott
06-17-2010, 10:19
Hypothetical Answer

What you would have would suck !!:grin:

White Dog
06-17-2010, 11:27
Actually, what Josh describes is indeed a typical mashbill for Bourbon. I would vote yes, you do indeed have Bourbon in the barrel. However, we really need Cowdery to chime in for an official answer.

cowdery
06-17-2010, 11:47
Actually, what Josh describes is indeed a typical mashbill for Bourbon. I would vote yes, you do indeed have Bourbon in the barrel. However, we really need Cowdery to chime in for an official answer.

Matt is correct.

OscarV
06-17-2010, 12:48
, could I legally sell it as a bourbon?[code][/COD

I hope not and I see from Matt and Chuck's respose that I won't have to lose any sleep over it.

Beakerboy
06-17-2010, 13:31
Per the BAM (http://www.ttb.gov/spirits/bam/chapter4.pdf):

Whisky produced in the U.S. at not exceeding 80% alcohol by volume (160 proof) from a fermented mash of not less than 51 percent corn and stored at not more than 62.5% alcohol by volume (125 proof) in charred new oak containers

Since two of the spirits entering the barrel are not from a mash of at least 51% corn, it shouldn't be a bourbon.

Kevin

barturtle
06-17-2010, 14:15
I would agree with Kevin.

What you would have would be at the very least "Whisky" and at the most "Blended Whisky"

Whisky-Spirits distilled from a fermented mash of grain at less than 95% alcohol by volume (190 proof) having the taste, aroma and characteristics generally attributed to whisky and bottled at not less than 40% alcohol by volume (80 proof)

Blended Whisky-Whisky produced by blending not less than 20% on a proof gallon basis (excluding alcohol derived from added harmless coloring, flavoring or blending materials*) straight whisky or a blend of straight whiskies and, separately or in combination, whisky of any type or neutral spirits.

Just remember, just because what you have doesn't meet some sort of desired legal definition, doesn't mean you can't have something that tastes good.

CorvallisCracker
06-17-2010, 14:39
If I took a 10 ltr charred oak barrel and filled it with 7 liters of 100% corn spirit, 2 liters of 100% Rye spirit and 1 liter of 100% malted barley spirit, could I legally sell it as a bourbon?

Not bourbon, no, but what you're describing is sortakinda like what John Hall is doing at Forty Creek.


What you would have would suck !!:grin:

Not necessarily. I like Forty Creek.

cowdery
06-17-2010, 16:11
Matt and now Kevin are right.

Bourbon is a type of whiskey. Because the regs say it must be made "from a fermented mash of not less than 51 percent corn," you can't get there through the back door by mixing different whiskeys which, collectively, add up to more than 51 percent corn. It has to be one whiskey made from a mash of not less than 51 percent corn and "mixtures of such whiskies of the same type." Mixtures of whiskeys of different types are some kind of blend.

ILLfarmboy
06-17-2010, 16:28
Matt and now Kevin are right.

Bourbon is a type of whiskey. Because the regs say it must be made "from a fermented mash of not less than 51 percent corn," you can't get there through the back door by mixing different whiskeys which, collectively, add up to more than 51 percent corn. It has to be one whiskey made from a mash of not less than 51 percent corn and "mixtures of such whiskies of the same type." Mixtures of whiskeys of different types are some kind of blend.

I love it when you're a strict constructionist. :grin: