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Jun 08, 2022 View:

Mashing 100 Rye Whiskey

Contemplating a 100% rye whiskey

first has anyone done one and what do you like or dislike?

so from my past life as a beer brewer i have done many rye beers and mashed at 150°F for 60-90 minutes for full starch conversion to fermentable sugars. This is the ideal temperature and time it takes for roller milled grain to convert. Know in my distilling world and equipment i do grain in mashes like most of us. When making a bourbon after high temp cooking my grain i chill down my mash to 150° and add my 21% of rye and 4% of barley. i liquefy really well and hit my numbers i am targeting. 
But with a 100% rye grain bill that has been hammer milled to a rye flour, will it liquefy at the 150°F temp ? Do i need to convert sugars first at 150° then raise the temp? Will i need enzymes? 

Anyone willing to share their mash schedule for an all or very high rye?


thank you again in advance


Is any part of the rye going to be malted? That will determine if you will need enzymes (what type) and/or how much.

Have you ever distilled rye whiskey before to know what to expect?  If not, have you ran a 51% rye before?  If so how did you handle foaming issues if you had them.

I myself would not grind to a flour, but that's just me.  Try a small batch first time to get a feel for running rye.  Some people find it a non-event while others have a lot of trouble with rye.


I have done 21% rye whiskeys not true 51% or higher. i am aware of the foaming and planned on using antifoaming agents. We will be using unmalted rye so will be adding enzymes. As our mash tun does not have a false bottom we need to liquify the grain. it will not liquify if just cracked in a roller mill, at least i dont think it will. 


I'd give this thread a good read as it will have some good information in it plus give you an idea of some things to watch out for.


We do a high (un-malted) rye (92%). We use a high temp alpha amylase that does its thing best around 180F, but we pitch it with our initial grain at around 110F, so it's in there for the whole cook. Really achieves a nice, workable consistency. After the crash we pitch a gluco amylase as we fill the fermenter. Great consistency, conversion, and overall results. I use a dab of no-foam right after the alpha add, and a bit on each stripping run. Foaming has not been an issue.


There is a distillery in NY that was known to do 100% green (unmalted) rye whiskey without addition of enzymes. It is hard to do, but possible, because rye is one of the few grains that has some enzyme available in the unmalted grain and is one of the easier grains to convert.

We do our "rye" whiskey with 100% malt rye.


Everything on here previously stated I agree with. We cook a lot of Rye every week and cycle between 95% R and 51%R mash bills, as well as a 44% Rye bourbon once a year. Viscosity and protease enzymes