Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Latest eGullet thing to lust after


gfweb
 Share

Recommended Posts

25 minutes ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

I thought home distilling spirits was illegal in the US?

 

It totally is.  Nobody here should get one and talk about it.  That would be a very bad idea for members not based in NZ.  I recall hearing that the Feds have some sort of way of getting told you bought one of these things, and that makes the whole probable cause thing a whole lot easier for them if they ever want an easy excuse to bust down the door of your house. 

Edited by cdh (log)
  • Like 1

Christopher D. Holst aka "cdh"

Learn to brew beer with my eGCI course

Chris Holst, Attorney-at-Lunch

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know a lot of people who use them for distilling herbal medicines and suchlike. I have heard, but not confirmed, that the use of stills for "to-drink" spirits was an afterthought to their original use in medicine.

 

Where I live it's legal to distill alcohol for your own use, but not for distribution or sale.

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No plans to distill because of the legality/explosion risk, but if I did I wouldn't buy one from a Wayfair drop shipper

 

There is some super cool culinary stuff from overseas though, mostly on Aliexpress - grain puffers, cheap rotovaps, cheap antigriddles, but I think it all runs into the same issue - no recourse if item goes missing, breaks, possibly unreliable equipment etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In high school we distilled some sort of moonshine in chemistry class, although we called it poitin (pronounced 'potcheen'), the Irish name. Funnily enough, the teacher's name was Mr. Still!

Edited by liuzhou (log)
  • Like 2
  • Haha 2

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If I could still find it, and if it hasn't rusted all to pieces, I guess I could go retrieve great-grandpa's....

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1

Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It used to be super illegal, but some of the laws have changed. They now make it easy for people to get microdistilling licenses, etc. ... it's why there are so many small-label bourbons and gins all of a sudden. I don't know how this affects moonshine. It might still be verboten, but maybe they care less (like the places where weed's still illegal but casual users don't get hassled anymore). 

 

BTW, I love that these beautiful things are selling at near-hillbilly prices.

Notes from the underbelly

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 10/11/2021 at 6:30 PM, chromedome said:

I know a lot of people who use them for distilling herbal medicines and suchlike. I have heard, but not confirmed, that the use of stills for "to-drink" spirits was an afterthought to their original use in medicine.

 

Where I live it's legal to distill alcohol for your own use, but not for distribution or sale.

it is?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

36 minutes ago, Kerry Beal said:

it is?

That's what they told me at the store where I was eyeballing one, at any rate. :)

 

 

  • Like 2

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 minutes ago, chromedome said:

That's what they told me at the store where I was eyeballing one, at any rate. :)

 

 

They sell stills in Canada in some of the home-brew stores - but it is illegal to distill - unlikely to be prosecuted unless someone tries to sell - but still illegal. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 minutes ago, Kerry Beal said:

- but it is illegal to distill - unlikely to be prosecuted unless someone tries to sell - but still illegal. 

From the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario:

 

https://www.agco.ca/alcohol/general-alcohol-faqs

 

Can I make alcohol at home?
You may make beer or wine at home as long as it is only for your personal consumption or to be given away free of charge. Homemade (or “u-brew”) beer or wine may not be sold or used commercially.

Homemade spirits and the use of a still in a person’s home are illegal under the Excise Act of Canada.

 

But I agree with Kerry - don't be putting a label on it!

 

p

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Kerry Beal said:

They sell stills in Canada in some of the home-brew stores - but it is illegal to distill - unlikely to be prosecuted unless someone tries to sell - but still illegal. 

 

So yeah, I got curious and went down the rabbit hole (also I'm supposed to be working, which means procrastination is *always* close at hand). You're right, the Excise Act does make home distilling illegal in Canada as a whole, though each province has its own liquor control act as well. Formal legalization is considered to be extremely unlikely within the hobbyist community, on the not-unjustified basis that taxes on alcohol constitute a massive revenue stream for the government (and unlike beer and wine, there's enough of a price difference on spirits to make it well worth doing if you're a serious drinker).

 

In terms of on-the-ground enforcement it does indeed seem to be handled on a "don't ask, don't tell" basis. Unless you're selling it, or poison somebody with your homebrew, or give it out on election day to buy votes for your candidate of choice (joking, I think) the odds of being prosecuted are effectively nil. Apparently there hasn't been a prosecution for the past several decades, anywhere in Canada, except for those who violated the fundamental "don't be stupid about it" rule. Some of the more combative hobbyists believe that there are enough grey areas in the liquor laws that the government has zero desire to test them in court, lest it lose and open the floodgates. That may be true, but I note that none of them have tried to become a test case, themselves.

 

Here in NB specifically there appears to be an interesting loophole, in that our provincial Act permits distilling for medicinal purposes, defined as the replication of anything in the British or American pharmacopeia. The British pharmacopeia, apparently, includes a preparation of straight-up alcohol distilled to 84% purity. So there's that. :P You could also add your "medicinal" herb or two of choice to flavor the resulting product, and justify your hobby that way. It's even possible to apply for a distiller's license if you have a commercial kitchen (as farmer's market vendors often do, for example) in which to prepare the mash. Apparently the small-producer license costs relatively little except in time and paperwork.

 

Hypothetically I suppose we could see a scenario here that parallels the situation with cannabis in the US: illegal federally, but legalized in some fashion in individual states. The situations aren't really comparable, though. Legalizing weed makes it possible for the government to begin taxing it, whereas legalizing home distilling would cost the province money. Somehow I don't see that happening, even in libertarian-leaning Alberta.

  • Like 2

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd imagine that home distilling wouldn't affect tax dollars much. Too much work for most...aging in charred oak etc is even more work.  It'd be kept in little bottles and served to one's friends (who'd be too nice to say its harsh).

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

interesting.

 

https://boozemakers.com/home-distilling-laws-by-state/

 

"""  The State of Missouri, for example, theoretically allows the manufacturing of 100 gallons of liquor per year (but, as mentioned, it is still federally illegal). Other states that theoretically allow moonshining are Alaska, Arizona, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Rhode Island.  ""

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...