Homemade “Vodka” Tastes Great

| 7/13/2010 10:10:01 AM

vodkaA small jar of clear liquid in a brown bag appeared on my desk this week. It was a sample of the moonshine one of my colleagues had just made and it was DEE-licious. He made it by simply adding a special type of yeast to a tub full of sugar and water, fermenting the mixture and then running it through his reflux still for about 4 hours, then filtering it through a long column of activated charcoal. The alcohol came out very smooth, at 160 proof (meaning 80 percent alcohol) so he diluted it half and half with water, producing an 80 proof vodka. Who knew making your own high-quality alcoholic beverages could be so easy? (And yes, we know the alcohol industry and federal tax folks have managed to make it currently illegal to do this in the United States.) 

Stay tuned — MOTHER EARTH NEWS has an article coming up next year about Artisan Alcohol Distilling.

Photo by Brenna Long

5/3/2014 12:38:49 AM

MomaSharon is completely right! The laws in the US are so crazy. It's all about tax money and the feds trying to keep their hands in our pockets as deep as possible (not in the fun way ;) I bought a still from www.copper-still.net to use to make my own "fuel" which is completely legal.

Wally Schiel
7/19/2010 7:59:10 PM

Here in Western Australia it is also illegal to distill your own spirits, but you can buy all the gear you need (still, condenser,yeast, flavours woodchips ec,etc)from homebrew stores. I have been distilling for about 5 years, and have not bought `commercial` alchohol for that long!! I use the by product (the first 100mils of alchol) as window cleaner, and it works like you wouldn`t believe!! The web site is www.stillspirits.com and it is very helpful. Regards Wally Master Brewer of the West!!!!!

Charles J_3
7/19/2010 5:13:10 PM

Because the majority of us are forced to pay for the mistakes of the few. This is how it is all throughout society. Because a few foolish people will drink the alcohol straight without filtering it or diluting it they could injure themselves so the rest of us have to do without. This system needs to change.

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