The 3Bs - Botanicals Bases and Blending artwork
Still Magic

The 3Bs - Botanicals Bases and Blending

  • S1E5
  • 21:12
  • June 11th 2020

Episode 5

Welcome to the Still Magic Podcast, your one-click audio stop for all things gin be it gin making, gin production, gin distilling, gin manufacturing, gin commercialising, gin tasting, gin drinking, gin steeping and everything else in between.

In this episode we consider the 3rd of the 3 Bs; Blending.

Blending is a seemingly simple concept; take two or more similar things and mix them together. However, what may appear to be a simple concept in principle, does not mean it is easy to do. For example, bronze is a mixture of two similar metals; copper and tin. Somehow modifying these two metals to create a new product, is no mean feat but at its simplest, it is merely the mixing of two similar things. The creation of mayonnaise, fireworks that burst into colour, meringues, mushroom sauce and grey paint are everyday examples of products that needed blending principles in place, to create them.

This podcast explores blending when conducted in spirits manufacturing in general, with a focus upon gin. You will receive insights concerning the following terms and their relevance to the blending process. It may appear a little technical at first sight, but the intent is to explain the terms using simple examples along the way

  • Water. It’s chemical structure and properties
  • Azeotrope. Why this is the key to all magic that takes place during the distillation process
  • Colligative properties. How simple additives can change freezing points and boiling points
  • Reduction. Adding water to alcohol, and why it must take place in stages (the 50% rule)
  • Marrying. The process water and alcohol undergo as they combine into a coherent whole
  • Fortification. Adding alcohol to increase strength
  • Jigger. A simple device that helps measure 2 different liquid quantities quickly
  • Hydrogen bonding. The reason why water and alcohol heat up during reduction processes
  • Obscuration. The difference between actual strength and apparent strength
  • Professional analysis. Why this is an excellent investment for measuring strength

Be bold. Enjoy yourselves. Let's create the next gin narrative.

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Narrator: Marcel Thompson



Still Magic

Hosted by award winning gin distiller and educator Marcel Thompson, the Still Magic podcast provides insights concerning gin making, gin producing, gin distilling, gin manufacturing, gin commercialising, gin tasting, gin drinking gin steeping and everything else in between.

Each podcast episode brings gin's centuries-long history to life in a contemporary setting, season by season. This includes assessing an array of different gins in efforts to determine what makes a great gin.

Local and international distillers share their insights as well. You'll receive a rare glimpse into the energy, passion, and desire that manifests itself as wonderful products people enjoy worldwide.

Collective experiences from episode guests will show that the following principles are as applicable to a gin making journey as any other new, exciting, or challenging endeavour

  •         Simplicity is best;
  •         Less is more;
  •         Inexperience is no barrier to success.

Be bold. Enjoy yourselves. Let's create the next gin narrative...