Gin - to steep or not?

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Gin - to steep or not?

Postby Rolls912 » Mon Jul 08, 2019 6:44 pm

Ive read hundreds of posts both here and from makers websites.

I’m still unsure as to whether I should steep ingredients before running the carter head? From what I gather;
some ingredients are more suited to steeping.
How long?
And finally, at what temperature?

There appears to be a lot of conflicting commentary.

The pro’s appear to do it but perhaps their superior equipment has an influence on steeping (think 4p’s Carl still).

Should we create an ultimate steeping thread that specifically relates to gin?

I’m keen to to take my gin to the next level - :techie-studyingbrown:
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Re: Gin - to steep or not?

Postby MaKa » Mon Jul 08, 2019 8:14 pm

There is no simple answer to your question. Broadly you can either macerate your botanicals or vapour infuse them. The answer mostly depends on your preferred style of gin and the botanicals that you are using.

Macerated Gins
In my opinion this generates a much more flavoursome gin that is packed with oils. In this technique there are again a couple of ways of making it. You can either macerate for 12-24 hour and then add the botanicals to your boiler and distill the macerated liquid or you can macerate for about 2 weeks, filter off the botanicals and distill the filtered spirit. Too many botanicals in your macerated alcohol and you end up with louching in your final product.

Vapour infusion
This sort of gin doesn't run the same risk of louching as you may risk with a macerated gin but also results in a lighter flavoured gin.

The answer is not as black and white as you may want and the only way to determine what suits you is to experiment. It really land somewhere in the middle where you can use a combination of the two techniques.

I personally macerate for about 23 hours and then add some of the more delicate botanicals to the vapour path. Things in the vapour path include florals, sometimes you can put your citrus there etc.

A final note is if you are adding botanicals to the boiler you need to be careful they do not touch your heat source and scorch. I hand my botanicals in a hop bag when they are in the boiler
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Re: Gin - to steep or not?

Postby Rolls912 » Mon Jul 08, 2019 8:55 pm

Interesting... I wonder if I would be better to steep the finer botanicals to bring them forward and vapour the juniper, coriander and Angelica. London style is getting a bit boring IMO and this method would hero the signature ingredients wouldn’t it?
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Re: Gin - to steep or not?

Postby MaKa » Thu Jul 11, 2019 1:59 pm

I am not sure on that one. Something to try set up a side by side comparison and see what you think.
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Re: Gin - to steep or not?

Postby bluc » Thu Jul 11, 2019 2:45 pm

Depends what flavours you want bold. Dont meerly steep week ones to bring them forward steep the ones you want to dominate..Because some flavours work better week and some work better bold.. This may help you decide what flavours you want and what you want to be the stars of your gin...
Botanicals-Library-Flavour-Wheel-credit-to-Ioanna-Chatzi.png
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