Hey ADI squad,
We are using 4" x 3' stainless steel piping filled with fine (approx 1mm) ground coconut activated charcoal to filter our finished spirits. We pack the top of the "filter pipe" with copper mesh to prohibit charcoal passing through into the final product. Each product has its own specific filter to prohibit cross contamination.
Process as follows:
1.) Proof down spirit to 10p above final proof
2.) Recirculate RO water through the filter until clear (approx 5-10 minutes)
3.) Filter product (finished whiskey, vodka, gin...ect) We recirculate the product through these filters at about 5 gals per minute. The filtration time is about 30 minutes per 50 gals of spirit.
4.) We pull samples every 15 minutes to get the desired sensory we are looking for on our products.
5.) Finish final proof down, run through final bottling filters (5 micron then 1 or .5 micron) on a Mori 6 head gravity bottler.
6.) After filtration we are leaving a small amount of filtered product in the filters to keep the charcoal moist "simi primed" for the next use (sometimes up to 2-3 months before next use.)
We are getting a nice filtration on the spirits. It helps cut some bite out of the product as well as polishes the spirit. I am reaching out to ask others how they are filtering their finished spirits. I'm not sure why the previous SOPs were to use coconut charcoal vs another form of activated charcoal. It is time to replace the charcoal in the filters, after 15-20 uses. Is 15-20 filtration runs to much or can I get more out of it? I have seen an increase in time needed to filter for the outcome that is desired. Thus I believe it is time to swap out the charcoal. I am welcome to any and all advice on product filtration, SOPs or any part of this process.
All of the users on here are rock stars so thanks in advanced for the time taken on any and all replies.
I only filter my vodka, and try to use the still, cuts, fermentation conditions, and aging to get the flavor profile im looking for in everything else. I change out my charcoal every 2 or 3 batches, but i know it can also be cleaned with steam if you have it readily available.