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  1. #1

    Dunder/ Sour Mash

    I would like to know what differences in flavour there are between a bourbon whisky made with sour mash, and one made without. is the flavour mellower?

    is the sour mash method similar to the use of dunder in rum production?

    Thank you,



  2. #2
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 1999

    Re: Dunder/ Sour Mash

    The use of sour mash or its alternative, sweet mash, does not affect the flavor of the whiskey. It was developed as a process control measure, a way of "conditioning" the mash to produce a consistent fermentate from batch to batch. With sour mash, spent mash is introduced into the new batch. This is also known as backset. Sweet mash simply means new yeast is used for each batch, with no backset. Today, with modern process controls, either method will produce a satisfactory result, but sour mash is the traditional method and is practiced by all American whiskey distillers.

    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://cowdery.home.netcom.com>--Chuck Cowdery</A>

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Las Vegas, Nevada USA

    Re: Dunder/ Sour Mash

    Would some of the American Single Malt Whiskeys (Old Potrereo, Peregrine Rock, & McCarthy's) technically be sweet rather than sour mash?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Midland, MI

    Re: Dunder/ Sour Mash

    >I would like to know what differences in flavour there are between a bourbon
    >whisky made with sour mash, and one made without. is the flavour mellower?

    Sour mash is mostly a quality control issue: it lowers the pH of the new batch
    of mash. Low pH discourages bacteria, which would otherwise produce
    "off" flavors. You can lower the pH of "sweet mash" by adding something
    acidic, and achieve the same result.

    One could argue that there are things in the backset that influence the
    yeast during fermentation, and also that the backset contains things
    that might come over into the white dog on their second trip to the still even
    though they didn't on their first trip, etc., but these are subtle mysteries
    that will always be speculative.

    (I've heard that using dunder and running a sour mash are the same thing.)




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