This again might be a little bit on the nerdy side. But I thought, let science come into this “Farbstoff”-business (a good gerrrman approach to everrrythingck). I got into biology, physics, mathematics and theology. And this is, what I found:
Biology says: our olfactory system can detect aromas in a dilulted ratio of 1:1.000.000.
Physical science says: a drop of water (or caramel) is about 0,05 ml, that is 0,00005 l.
Now mathematics: e.g. a hogshead barrel holds 250 l. So consequently a diluted substance could be detected in a hogshead barrel, if added in an amount of 0,00025 l. That are five tiny, little drops of a substance.
Again biology: there is no way we would detect four - or of course less than four - tiny little drops though.
Spirit caramel (E 150) is not sweet, ok. It is bitter. Five tiny, little drops of bitter caramel might be detected in a hogshead barrel. We as connoisseurs would say: “Ay, ay, there is also an other interesting aroma here, something quite, quite, eh - bitterish!” Four drops would leave us and our fellow admirers completely unimpressed. Biologically, physically and mathematically proved
Now - does anybody know anything about the quantity of caramel that actually comes into our whisky
The debate might come to a quick end here! At least the debate whether caramel has any noticeable impact on the product, besides - of course! - the colour. And that is where I still follow Olivers remarks.
It’s not alone Madeye-Moody who says: “Vigilance!” You are right, Oliver, about that. In Europe consumers are on the verge of paranoia when foodstuffs are concerned. People in my neighbourhood e.g. won’t buy ketchup or soy-sauce if they know that genetically processed ingredients come with them, despite industries sayings that this is absolutely harmless and effetively even good for you. Not to talk about spanish strawberries in march… Now we shouldn’t compare genetically processed food (or parts of it) and pesticids with caramel in our whisky? Right!
Caramel is indeed, as far as we know, not poisonous or intoxicating. Whisky is, and that is what we love about whisky
. But we consumers should simply have a chance to know what we consume – this is a vital part of an open and free society with all the choices we should be able to make. And again, we should know what choices we have. So it’s good to have “mit Farbstoff” on my label, to know it’s coloured and it might still be good for me to explore and enjoy my drink.
P.S And - just in case, there are five or more drops of caramel in a hogshead barrel, I forgot to tell You - this is what theology says:
Genesis 4, 15: “And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.”
P.P.S A caramel drop is not the worst thing on earth, at least not in my candy shop.
Oh no, no, that was bitter…