Monday, August 21, 2017

Freckles, they are good

Chemists confirm that whiskey really does taste better with a splash of water

Hey, it's science!

The reason is guaiacol, an aromatic oil that gives the liquor its signature smoky flavor. Guaiacol is present in guaiacum, a kind of slow-growing shrub with pretty purple flowers, and, as relates to whiskey, the compound is also present in something called wood creosote.
To make whiskey, distillers create a mash, or fermented alcohol solution from a mixture of grains, yeast and water. If you’ve ever wondered what, besides spelling, separates American whiskey from Irish whiskey and Scottish whisky, the answer is (at least in part) the ingredients. Broadly speaking, American whiskey (also called bourbon) is usually made from corn; Irish whiskey from a blend of malted and regular barley; Scottish whiskey (Scotch) from only malted barley. After the mash is made with its respective grain, whiskey makers pour it in distillers, or special containers that boil off the methanol—alcohol that famously makes humans go blind. That leaves behind ethanol, the alcohol that we think of as, well, alcohol, along with the flavors of the original mash. The remaining liquid is put to age in charred oak barrels, which is where scotch gains it’s guaiacol. Charring wood creates wood creosote, so as the liquid interacts with the barrel’s walls, guaiacol migrates into the liquor.

Unless you're drinking your whiskey through a bendy straw, you're sipping from what's known as the liquid-air interface—the top. But when whiskey is more than 50 percent alcohol, as is the case with some of the finer varieties, guaiacol tends to hang out deep in the glass. Adding a bit of water moves guaiacol closer to the surface, where you can better smell and taste it, creating a more satisfactory flavor.

So there it is!   Splash some water into the dram,and enjoy your medicine!

Ready for the eclipse

Or, just wait a few hours, and the whole country will be plunged into darkness, an event we call night time.

I'd like some of this weather where I live, thanks.

Wonder how much that thing weighed, and how front heavy it was.

Late in 1903 John Walter Christie, an American mechanic, engineer and inventor, started designing extraordinary vehicles with the most unusual engines and transmissions. His point of view wasn’t as common as others. He aimed at designing a concept that pulled (like a train or carriage), instead of pushing (like a boat). That is how he came to front wheel drive. But he went a step further placing the engine transversely between the front wheels, just like Alec Issigonis did some 50 years later when he designed the Mini. Christie was the first serious proponent of front wheel drive cars in the US.

These are fun to play with

But, matches are better.

And yet, a flameless lighter is probably best of all.

Tools, kit and gear