Glassware lined the tables of a presentation room at the 2019 ACSA Craft on Ice Distillers’ Convention and Trade Show. Audience members filled the room, and turned their attention to the front as Dr. Patricia Aron of the Rahr Technical Center, Ilya Soroka of BSG, and Seth Reid of 11 Wells Spirit Company presented a Sensory Analysis and Tasting of Malt Whiskey Mash Distillations. 

            “People see malt as a challenge,” said Ilya Soroka of BSG Distilling.In the presentation, the three demonstrated the differences in flavors possible when you reconsider your whiskey mash composition. “Malt is what I wanted to showcase,” said Ilya, “as well as include a tasting to make the presentation engaging and fun, so we decided to do six mashes with different compositions and methods,” he explained. During the talk, they demonstrated the effect on flavor produced via two methods of mashing: one a brewers mash more common in European malt whisky production, and the other more common in American whiskey production, keeping the grain in for fermentation and distillation. The presentation showcased the above mashing methods with 100% Rahr Pale Ale malt, and four brewer’s mashes, each which featured a different specialty malt. 

“We wanted to show the range of flavor specialty malts are able to produce in a spirit distillation,” Ilya said. Ilya’s portion of the presentation included presenting the mashing and the fermentation. Dr. Patricia Aron presented the tasting and sensory data collected from the Rahr Technical Center Sensory Panel. Seth Reid discussed the distillations, the equipment he used, and the considerations made in the production of the spirits for the tasting. 

The ACSA Craft on Ice Distillers’ Convention and Trade Show next year will take place in Portland, OR from March 29th-31st.