Some say it's science and others argue that whiskey making is an art. Master distiller Vincent Messina would say it's both. "Sure we have a recipe that we use to make our whiskeys, but the magic happens when I take the best ingredients, barrels and stills then put them together."
Raw ingredients are heated up and cooked to 190 degrees, allowing sugars and starches to fully emerge.
This is the most idle part of the process. Yeast is introduced to consume the sugar and starches and converts them to alcohol.
This is the process where alcohol escape the fermented mash and comes across as a high proof, clear liquid.
This is where the bourbon gets it's brown coloring from because each barrel is charred on the inside. Bourbon is always barreled 115-130 proof.
"Aging is the hardest part." - Tom Petty
Barrels must be aged at least 2 years to be called bourbon.
This is where we add water to the high proof alcohol and bring it down to the proper ABV, so it is smoother and easier to consume.