Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby woodduck » Wed Feb 20, 2019 9:44 pm

I did get the flavor through but it wasn't what I was looking for to be honest. It was more of the bitter lemon taste not the sweet. I've been trying to find how I did mine but can't seem to find it sorry. I used a paint stirrer and mixed the shit out of it till it was really fine pulp. Mine also sat for a few months before I distilled it maybe that gave it time to infuse more flavor? I don't think I ran it any differently to a whiskey.

Your not using a packed section are you? The recipe is called a vodka but it needs to be run like a whiskey not a vodka.

Sorry I can't be of more help.
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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby wynnum1 » Thu Feb 21, 2019 8:30 am

Could the lemons be placed in alcohol whole for a short time to get flavor from the lemon zest if there not cut not going to be exposed to the bitter part of the lemon as long as there not left too long .
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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby Plumby » Thu Feb 21, 2019 4:41 pm

I've made it a few times now, I just run a pot still but I do 3 strip runs then a spirit run. I dilute the low wines down to below 40% with more wash for the spirit run and I've always had good results. Nice strong lemon flavour and aroma, mixes well with lemonade and coke zero.
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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby Wobblyboot » Thu Feb 21, 2019 8:24 pm

JayTee wrote:Hi - I'd appreciate some guidance please from anyone who has managed to get a reasonably strong lemon flavour out of the recipe based on a single distillation on a 4 plate column. My first attempt was bit disappointing - it tastes nice, but it's only very mildly tasting of lemon. If you add tonic, the flavour is lost. Here are the main points:

- My single 4 plate run was full reflux for about 45 minutes
Any ideas why my flavour was so weak please?

Start taking fore’s off as soon as plates load. Holding in full reflux strips the flavour out :handgestures-thumbupleft:
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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby JayTee » Thu Feb 21, 2019 11:43 pm

Thanks for all the helpful comments guys - much appreciated :-)

I have an admission to make. Since posting my original question, I've tasted it again and the flavour isn't quite as weak as I first thought. This was based on me tasting the booze straight after making the cuts and diluting back to 40%. Tastebuds were a bit knackered I think - schoolboy error!! I still think it will benefit with a little more flavour and I'm going to start taking foreshots as soon as the plates load (Wobblyboot's suggestion). I think that might be the magic!

@Woodduck - I was just using 4 x plates and RC - quite a bit of reflux as I was treating it more like vodka than whiskey. That might also be the error as you say.

@davesims - I use Potassium Carbonate to raise pH. I really rate it but wouldn't want to advise how much you need because it depends on the acidity of your lemons and how many you use. In my case I needed 8 teaspoons (dissolved in water first) added to the wash to raise pH from 2.75 to around 4.2. I figured that was a good pH for EC1118 and I found it was a really solid & steady ferment. Bear in mind different yeast will have a different pH preference. (I did try calcium carbonate when I first got into stillin' but it's chalky and horrible and you have to leave it for some time to make sure the full pH rise has been factored into the wash). You'll need a cheap pH meter
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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby Guyross » Wed Sep 02, 2020 1:29 pm

Well, was sitting on a pile of lemons, so decided what the hell, lemon vodka sounds fine. Always can use more grog, right? :twisted:

Well, peeled a mighty pile of those suckers, and put them briefly into a blender to pulp them up, tossed in the requisite peels (why not thought I), and started the ferment.

Being a bright spark, and having read all the comments about slow fermenting, I decided to use dextrose as figured it would ferment a bit easier. Whizzed the hell out of it with my paint mixer, checked ph, which was low at around 4, chucked some calcium carbonate in to raise it a bit, and then rehydrated some distillers vodka yeast, poured it in at 32 degrees, gave it a bit of a stir, left a moderate amount of headspace, and sealed it with a bubbler on top (wanted to make sure it got going).

So as you can see, I did not exactly follow the tried and proven. But I didn’t think I did too much wrong.

Well, blow me dead, came out a couple hours later to a volcano. That ferment was going off, and had blown the bubbler out, was squirting pulp out the little hole, and was carrying on something fierce. Unsealed the lid and got covered in lemon pulp, as it was under a fair bit of pressure. Quickly drained a bit out of it creating a bit of space, and just sat the lid on, and called it a night.

Well, next morning came out to an invasion of lemon pulp. It seems to have settled to a dull roar at the moment, but the one wild rum ferment I had was nothing compared to this ferment. This thing is epic.

Not sure when it will be dry, but it sure is off to a blazing start.

So, will keep you posted on how this goes, but for sure a slow ferment is not always the case with lemon vodka.
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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby howard » Wed Sep 02, 2020 3:59 pm

[quote="Guyross"]Well, was sitting on a pile of lemons, so decided what the hell, lemon vodka sounds fine. Always can use more grog, right? :twisted:

just checked my lemon vodka, started 15 days ago.
went down the lemoncello/lemon vodka path as well.
mine never 'took off' at all, it's just chugged along nice & steady, and it's still chugging along very slowly.
just tested it at 1004 so i assume it is close to finishing.
followed the recipe as per page 1, but for 25L wash.
lemons, DAP, vitamin, EC-1118 & white sugar.
constant temp of 20C in fridge.
only thing i did differently was to accidently fill the fermenter to 29L while i was writing up my notes :roll:
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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby Guyross » Sun Sep 13, 2020 8:46 pm

Update on my lemon vodka fiasco: that was a disaster. Don’t know what I did wrong, but it ended up as the nastiest tasting and smelling stuff imaginable. Won’t be doing that again, I suspect. Maybe needed to have racked it a couple of times, to get everything settled. Biggest loser I ever had. It all went into the feints jars. :crying-blue:
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Re: Mac's Lemon Vodka discusion topic.

Postby howard » Tue Sep 15, 2020 11:01 am

stripped my wash the other day.
i left the jars breathing for a few days days and couldn't really get any sort of lemon off them.
i will just throw the lot in with a spirit run.
recipe did say 'peel and quarter lemons' and only 'add half a dozen quartered lemon skins' only.
i am willing to try again if i mis-interpreted the recipe, my lemon tree is groaning under the weight of lemons.
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