The spelt used in this vodka is harvested from fields that belong to Georg Hiebl’s own certified organic business. The spirit is distilled in a way that allows the grain’s flavor variety to shine. Soft, nutty aromas blend with notes of bitter almonds and a fatty mouthfeel.
When producing grain spirits Georg Hiebl employs a distillation technique that is used when making fruit brandies and that helps the spirit fully incorporate the ingredient’s aromas. The challenge does not lie in making an unrecognizable, highly distilled alcohol, but to carve out spelt’s sensory identity.
A nutty note with hints of marzipan.
Pleasantly clear sweetness, hints of roasted caramel and burnt bitter almonds.
Fatty mouthfeel, light bitter notes.
Spelt (triticum aestivum subsp. spelta) is a type of grain. Spelt is equipped with a hexaploid chromosome set. To our knowledge, no wild variety of spelt and common wheat exists, which is why it is assumed that spelt arose as a mutation from older wheat varieties such as durum wheat (triticum durum) with a fourfold chromosome set, wild emmer (triticum dicoccum), or einkorn wheat (triticum monococcum), a Stone Age form. The spelt is harvested from fields that belong to Georg Hiebl's own certified organic business.
Georg Hiebl heats the water to 75 degrees Celsius in the still before adding enzymes to the crushed amaranth. This induces the carbohydrate to split. After 30 minutes, the mash is cooled down to 55 degrees Celsius and the enzymes that induce starch saccharification are added. After this, the yeast is added and the mash is kept at 25 degrees Celsius. The mash ferments for four days and then distilled immediately, in order avoid the formation of negative aromas such as acetic acids. The spirit is distilled in a 150 liter facility. Georg Hiebl switches off the column with the booster bottom for this cereal and pseudo-grain spirit. After the first distillation, the raw distillate has circa 25% alcohol. It comes in at around 80% later.
Georg Hiebl believes that his grain spirit has “a more fatty body” because of the twofold distillation that does not use a column, which then makes it taste more full-bodied and aromatic. During the fine distillation phase, Hiebl separates the high-quality medium run and the tails sensorially. He does not believe that measuring the temperature at this stage would lead to his desired results.
Before it is adjusted to drinking quality with spring water, the fine distillate is stored for several months.
Distiller | Mostviertel, Lower Austria
Georg hails from a farming family in the Mostviertel of Lower Austria. He has been involved in the distillation of finest brandies since the mid 1990s. Georg is a three time overall winner of the “Destillata”. In 2014, he was awarded the “Boutique Distiller of the Year” title. He will produce a vodka made from quinoa, spelt, and amaranth for the Freimeisterkollektiv. A floral gin is in the works for next year.