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Chill Filtering

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Chill Filtering

Postby Marvin » Fri Nov 10, 2006 5:23 pm

Apparently the Americans are to blame for chill filtering as they used to keep their whisky in the fridge and at low temperatures that is when the fatty esters come out to play and float up to the top of the bottle giving a cloudiness to it.

Chill filtering is done at 0 to -2 degrees C, lower than that and you start filtering out other stuff which you want to keep in the whisky.

Whisky is filtered to remove the charcol deposits too, since charred barrels are used to store the whisky and so you get charcol particles in the liquid.
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Re: Chill Filtering

Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Nov 10, 2006 5:33 pm

Marvin wrote:Apparently the Americans are to blame for chill filtering as they used to keep their whisky in the fridge and at low temperatures that is when the fatty esters come out to play and float up to the top of the bottle giving a cloudiness to it.


Oh sure, blame us. 8)

Marvin wrote:Chill filtering is done at 0 to -2 degrees C, lower than that and you start filtering out other stuff which you want to keep in the whisky.


You do anyway! :x

Marvin wrote:Whisky is filtered to remove the charcol deposits too, since charred barrels are used to store the whisky and so you get charcol particles in the liquid.


All whiskies are given gross mechanical filtering to keep out bits of wood, etc. Having seen the inside of a freshly-recharred barrel, I have to say that I doubt there is any charcoal--it's a very light toasting. In fact, if your toast came up that color, you'd push it back down. The bits of charcoal in Blackadder Raw Cask bottlings are actually added--it's a gimmick, and one which I think cheapens what by all accounts is very good whisky, on the whole.
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Postby Marvin » Fri Nov 10, 2006 5:36 pm

Having seen some used filtration pads I can tell you there is indeed charcoal particles.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Nov 10, 2006 5:46 pm

So noted, thank you.
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Postby Photon » Sat Nov 11, 2006 12:34 am

What I don't understand is the whole "You cna't get the whisky below 46% abv without using chill filtration." Why can't you just add more water? What's special about 46% abv?

Confused per usual,

-P.
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Postby Marvin » Sat Nov 11, 2006 12:39 am

Photon wrote:What I don't understand is the whole "You cna't get the whisky below 46% abv without using chill filtration." Why can't you just add more water? What's special about 46% abv?

Confused per usual,

-P.


What happens is below a certain %age alcohol, the fatty esters come out of solution due to the fact that they are surrounded by more water molecules. This can give the whisky a cloudy appearance, espesially at low temperatures. Even at room temperature however the fatty esters still separate, it just takes longer. Doesnt affect the taste though, but people were pouring out their single malts thinking they had gone off because of the cloudiness.
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Postby Mr Fjeld » Sat Nov 11, 2006 1:13 am

If I may add, if the whisky is under ca 46% it will stay cloudy even when the temperature rises. At 46% or over it will get back to being normal "clear" . This is why all whiskies under 46% are chill filtered I believe?
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Postby Photon » Sat Nov 11, 2006 1:45 am

Thanks guys, that makes sense.

-P.
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Postby Di Blasi » Sat Nov 11, 2006 3:56 am

I think I have heard of whiskies less than 46% being chill-filtered. I just can't remember which ones. I'm sure someone out there knows. Oh yes, Compass Box!! 40% and 43%, un-chill filtered
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sat Nov 11, 2006 4:25 am

I saw a bottle of Bladnoch at 40%, unchillfiltered. It looked like an unfiltered weissbier.

Mr Picky sez it's not so much that whiskies under 46% are chillfiltered; it's more that bottlers who wish not to chillfilter don't dilute under 46%. Murray McDavid were the pioneers here, no?
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Postby Lawrence » Sat Nov 11, 2006 5:49 am

True, our bottling of Ben Nevis has quite a bit of this and that floating about and thus is full of flavour. Good for MMcD for listening to their customers.
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Postby Marvin » Sat Nov 11, 2006 12:21 pm

Di Blasi wrote:I think I have heard of whiskies less than 46% being chill-filtered. I just can't remember which ones. I'm sure someone out there knows.


Pretty much all of them are.
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Postby Di Blasi » Sat Nov 11, 2006 1:10 pm

Marvin wrote:
Di Blasi wrote:I think I have heard of whiskies less than 46% being chill-filtered. I just can't remember which ones. I'm sure someone out there knows.


Pretty much all of them are.


Whooooops! I was tired last night, it was late! I meant to say I know of whisky NOT being chill-filtered and bottled under 46%. Compass Box doesn't chill-filter, not sure about all of their bottlings, and bottles under 46%.
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Postby Wave » Sat Nov 11, 2006 3:41 pm

Many of my Lorne Mackillop D&M Single Malt Aficionado's Club bottlings are at 43%, "Contains no additives of any sort and has not been subjected to chill stabilization or filtration".


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Postby Drammer » Sat Nov 11, 2006 7:18 pm

This dilution brinign out the fatty esters is exactly the same process that leads to the clouding of certain drinks like pastis, ouzo and raki. Traditionally one adds water to them and they go milky-white.
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Postby Marvin » Sat Nov 11, 2006 7:38 pm

Drammer wrote:This dilution brinign out the fatty esters is exactly the same process that leads to the clouding of certain drinks like pastis, ouzo and raki. Traditionally one adds water to them and they go milky-white.


Ah, same with absinth too.
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Postby TreacleSponge » Sat Nov 11, 2006 10:48 pm

Signatory do a range of unchillfiltered bottlings. I've only tried the Edradour - it does have more flavours than the usual 10yo, but I don't think it's as good.

And I'm pretty sure Bruichladdich (not just their Murray McDavid) don't chillfilter anything.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Nov 12, 2006 6:33 am

Yes, and they bottle at 46%--the practice dates to their acquisition by the MMcD party.

Is the nonchillfiltering threshold 46%, or 43%? I suspect it's not such a clear line. Perhaps 43% is fine most of the time, but 46% is considered safer.

(Gosh, TS, I got as far south as Carlisle this year--why did I not make it down to Mardale? Next year, maybe.)
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Postby Nidaros » Sun Nov 12, 2006 4:34 pm

I guess the Campbeltown whiskies are not chillfiltered, also they do not have additives.

One for purists I guess. Good as well.
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Postby Marvin » Sun Nov 12, 2006 7:26 pm

Nidaros wrote:I guess the Campbeltown whiskies are not chillfiltered, also they do not have additives.

One for purists I guess. Good as well.


Eh, no whisky has additives.
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Postby Lawrence » Sun Nov 12, 2006 7:27 pm

MrTattieHeid wrote:Yes, and they bottle at 46%--the practice dates to their acquisition by the MMcD party.

Is the nonchillfiltering threshold 46%, or 43%? I suspect it's not such a clear line. Perhaps 43% is fine most of the time, but 46% is considered safer.

(Gosh, TS, I got as far south as Carlisle this year--why did I not make it down to Mardale? Next year, maybe.)


I believe the threshold is 46% Mr. T.
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Postby Wave » Sun Nov 12, 2006 8:24 pm

Marvin wrote:
Nidaros wrote:I guess the Campbeltown whiskies are not chillfiltered, also they do not have additives.

One for purists I guess. Good as well.


Eh, no whisky has additives.


Ah but some do, your favorite carmel for one is considered an additive. Also those bits of charred cask that Black Adder adds to their bottlings. Disgusting! :P :?

The only additive I like in anything is when Chimay (Belgian Ale) adds yeast to their bottles of ale so it ferments more while in the bottle. Now that's a good additive!! :D


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Postby Marvin » Sun Nov 12, 2006 8:29 pm

Caramel is the only additive allowed, so why not just say caramel rather than additives. Charcoal isnt really an additive because it doesnt dissolve.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Nov 12, 2006 8:49 pm

Marvin wrote:Caramel is the only additive allowed, so why not just say caramel rather than additives. Charcoal isnt really an additive because it doesnt dissolve.


They add it, and you might well drink it, so it's an additive in my book, and a gimmicky one at that. I think the practice should be banned. Caramel, too, now that you mention it.

Additives are allowed in Canadian whisky, which is a shame.
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Postby Marvin » Sun Nov 12, 2006 9:01 pm

Do they actually add charcoal or does it come from the casks?
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Postby TreacleSponge » Sun Nov 12, 2006 9:09 pm

And to bring us back from the brink of a caramel thread derailment... ;)

Lawrence wrote: I believe the threshold is 46% Mr. T.

Oh, I’d never noticed that my non-chillfiltered 10yo Edradour is 46%, whereas the chillfiltered 10yo is 40%.

I drink both without water, so p’raps the abv difference is why I remember the non-chillfiltered as being more flavoursome, and I wonder now (as I didn’t make tasting notes) if it’s maybe not ‘worse’ than the standard 10yo – just ‘different’. In the interest of research, methinks it’s time for a tasting tonight :)

Has anyone else tried any of the Signatory Unchillfiltered range? Comes in a silver tin tube.

MrTattieHeid wrote:
(Gosh, TS, I got as far south as Carlisle this year--why did I not make it down to Mardale? Next year, maybe.)

Mr TH – we’re only 40 minutes drive south of Carlisle… a visit would be most welcome next time when you’re so (relatively!) nearby :)
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Nov 12, 2006 9:24 pm

TreacleSponge wrote:Mr TH – we’re only 40 minutes drive south of Carlisle… a visit would be most welcome next time when you’re so (relatively!) nearby :)


Thanks, TS, will definitely give it some thought--England has gotten short shrift from me the past couple years. As it was, I was already 2 1/2 hours out of my base in Isle of Whithorn. Just a quick border raid. Received courtesy from English Heritage, and returned with a fistful of postcards.

I've had some Sig ucf's--they seem to get good reviews, although I'm a little leery after a very unpleasant Caol Ila. Have to think it was poor cask selection, and if there's one thing an indy bottler shouldn't do, it's release something from a bad cask. But I had an HP that was fine, and have a Glen Rothes [sic] in waiting. I'm less apt to buy one now, anyway, as I prefer to get IB's at cask strength these days.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Nov 12, 2006 9:28 pm

Marvin wrote:Do they actually add charcoal or does it come from the casks?


They want you to think it comes naturally from the casks, but they make sure there is some in every bottle. I haven't had any Blackadders, and Joe Howell raves about them, but this really irks me. It's faking "natural".
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Postby Marvin » Sun Nov 12, 2006 9:42 pm

MrTattieHeid wrote:
Marvin wrote:Do they actually add charcoal or does it come from the casks?


They want you to think it comes naturally from the casks, but they make sure there is some in every bottle. I haven't had any Blackadders, and Joe Howell raves about them, but this really irks me. It's faking "natural".


Wouldnt be hard to make sure there's some in every bottle. Just dont filter it at all and mix it up well before bottling.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Nov 12, 2006 11:04 pm

Marvin wrote:Wouldnt be hard to make sure there's some in every bottle. Just dont filter it at all and mix it up well before bottling.


I hate when I "know" something, or think I do, and then can't document it. Have been searching for some verification of my claim, and the best I've found so far is a raised eyebrow from MaltMadness:

http://www.maltmadness.com/l160-169.html#169

Scroll down to the paragraph starting "OK, so what have we learned tonight?"

Everything else I've found has been credulous reportage of the Blackadder line--"It even has bits of cask in it," etc. If I find anything else, I'll let you know; in the meantime, if you wish to be skeptical of what I have said, I cannot blame you.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Nov 12, 2006 11:37 pm

Here's a brief thread on the topic, specifically referencing bourbon/American whiskey:
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/s ... -filtering

FYI, the thread's posters inlcude: 'cowdery' is Chuck Cowdery, whose articles appear in Whisky Magazine and other publications; 'jvanwinkle' is Julian Van Winkle III, bottler of the Pappy and Old Rip Van Winkle whiskeys; 'Ken Weber' is Buffalo Trace bourbon brand manager Ken Weber (whose comments pre-date the advent of non-chill-filtered George T. Stagg, William Larue Weller and Thomas Handy bottlings).
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Postby Mr Fjeld » Sun Nov 12, 2006 11:39 pm

I've certainly learned from this thread as I thought the only unchillfiltered single malts under 46% were the very old ones which had lost part of their alcohol content to the angels.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Nov 13, 2006 1:30 am

This from the Blackadder website:

We use a special bottling process to make sure that each and every bottle of Blackadder RAW CASK contains its own share of the cask sediments as well as natural oils and fats that might otherwise be left behind when filling a cask strength whisky straight from cask.

I will concede the possibility that the sediments are actually from the cask being bottled. Still, they go to some effort to insure that each bottle gets its bits. It still strikes me as gimmicky and unnecessary.

And hey...can't you define "Blackadder" as "one who adds black"? (Don't know why I didn't think of that before....)
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Postby Frodo » Mon Nov 13, 2006 5:39 am

TreacleSponge wrote:Has anyone else tried any of the Signatory Unchillfiltered range? Comes in a silver tin tube.


I've had an 11yr Ardmore - as has Harry, Lord P., and perhaps Wendy. Got used to it at the end. Certainly a flavourful malt...
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Postby Drrich1965 » Mon Nov 13, 2006 10:36 am

Frodo wrote:
TreacleSponge wrote:Has anyone else tried any of the Signatory Unchillfiltered range? Comes in a silver tin tube.


I've had an 11yr Ardmore - as has Harry, Lord P., and perhaps Wendy. Got used to it at the end. Certainly a flavourful malt...



I have had a wonderful 1981 21yo Brora, just stunning, a very intereting 1991 Bowmore 12yo, also terrific. Have a 11yo Edradour waiting in the wings to be opened.
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