does anyone know anything about attempts (or accidents) to incorporate popcorn or 'unusual' grains into whiskey mash?
reason i ask, my grandfather long passed on, (anecodotally) may have manufactured whiskey sans permit.. such is family tradition. one story goes, a farmer grew popcorn by accident, mislabeled seed, and it was unwanted and cheap.. so they put it in whiskey mash, after sprouting and drying it.. with great success. this was mid-depression in southern oklahoma, and it was 'strictly from hunger' that they didn't use sugar to stretch the mash. popcorn they had, popcorn they used, and they sprouted it to make it ferment better, malting it was labor and they HAD labor.. cash to buy sugar they did not.
the resulting 'white mule' was barreled briefly (weeks) with hand charred red oak chips added in to color the spirits, and sold to great acclaim.
many years later, i heard glowing stories of that 'yankee whiskey' that'd been hoarded for years as christmas and wedding quality. just wondered if anyone else had heard of such a thing..