A Comparison Of The Processes Of The Brewer With Those Of The Whiskey Distiller

From the experiments of one of the most learned chymists of Europe, it

has been demonstrated, that the proportions the most advantageous to the

formation of a good vinous liquor, are, one part of dry sweet substance

to four parts of water; that is, that the sugar must form one fifth of

the whole. We have, moreover, seen that 100lbs. of dry sweet matter gave

25 gallons of spirit 19 deg., which comes to 4lbs. of sugar per gallon.

We shall make use of that scale in comparing the processes of the brewer

with those of the whiskey distiller.

Supposing the bushel of grain to weigh 50 pounds, and that it gives 2

gallons of whiskey at 19 deg., each of which gallons is the product of 4lbs.

of sugar; then the strong beer which contains in 40 gallons the sweet

matter of 200lbs. of grain, contains the elements of 8 gallons of

spirit, or 32lbs. of dry sweet substance; and as the 40 gallons of this

beer weigh 320lbs. the 32lbs. of sugar form only one-tenth of it, which

is one half of Lavoisier's proportions.

Those of the distiller of whiskey are 100lbs. of grain to 100 gallons of

water, or thereabouts: 100lbs. of grain contain only 16lbs. of dry sweet

matter: therefore, as the 100 gallons of vinous liquor weigh 800lbs. the

16lbs. of sugar form only its fiftieth part.

Thence is seen how inferior the proportions of the whiskey distiller are

to those of the brewer, and how far they are from good theory. But the

brewer aims only at producing a sort of wine, and succeeds; while, the

distiller wants to make spirit, and only obtains it in the manner the

most expensive, and opposed to his own interest.