Rethink Craft Beer, Drink Whiskey
Seven Stills makes whiskey from craft beer. Our original goal was to create seven whiskeys for each of the seven hills of San Francisco, each designed by a different street artist.
Over our 10 years in business we have released over 100 unique expressions from different styles of beers.
Making a Wort
All whiskeys (and beers) start with a wort. Wort is made be steeping malted barley in a mash tun. The mashing process converts the starches in the grain into sugars. Traditional whiskey distillers use low quality feed grade barley to create a cost effective wort. We focus on using high quality specialty grains that contribute flavor and nuance to the finished spirit.
Fermenting a Beer
We add yeast to our wort (sugar water) to begin fermentation. The yeast breaks down the sugars in the wort to produce alcohol and carbon dioxide. Traditional whiskey distillers use turbo yeast to create alcohol as quickly as possible. We focus on using brewers yeast which take significantly longer to ferment, but produce unique flavors and esthers in the finished spirit.
Distilling a Beer
The fermented beer is then pumped into a still where it is heated and brought to a boil. As the beer is boiled, different components evaporate at different temperatures. We of course are targeting the boiling temperature of ethanol, which is captured by evaporating the beer and re-condensing it into a liquid.
Each batch of beer is distilled twice and is proofed with RO water to 59.5% alcohol.
Aging the Whiskey
Our distillate is then placed in an oak barrel. We use virgin New American Oak barrels that impart a rich flavor into the finished whiskey. Our whiskeys mature for 1-2 years. During the maturation process they pick up their brown color from the barrel, while the alcohols break down and mellow, resulting in a smooth and rounded whiskey.