How to Ultrasonically Fat-Wash Spirits
- A fat-washed spirit is an alcoholic beverage infused with oil or fat.
- High-power ultrasound waves produce very fine emulsions and it increases the mass transfer between the two phases.
- Ultrasonic fat washing, infuses the spirit with the flavor profile of the oil and obtains a unique new taste.
Alcohol can dissolve oil-soluble and water-soluble flavors, respectively. In fat-washed alcohol, oil or fat is used as the flavor-giving ingredient. In oils, e.g. sesame oil, and fats, e.g. duck fat, the majority of the aroma compounds are fat-soluble. The fat-wash technique, infuses the spirit with the oil aroma components.
Ultrasonication creates very small droplets and thereby fine emulsions. Due to the micron-size and nano-size droplets, the mass transfer between the alcohol and oil improves significantly. A higher mass transfer transfers more flavor components into the alcohol. The spirits adopt the fat flavor, but not its greasiness.
120g / 4 oz of intensely tasting fat, or 240g / 8 oz (or 6 fl oz.) of less intensive fats / oil
750ml (25 fl oz.) of alcohol (e.g. vodka, gin, rum)
Ultrasonic Fat-Washing – Step by Step:
- Pour the liquid fat, such as olive oil, coconut oil or bacon fat into a beaker!
- Add the alcohol and sonicate the mixture to produce a very fine emulsion!
- Fill the liquid blend into a glass jar and let it sit at room temperature for approximately 5 min, so that the flavors infuse the alcohol!
- Put the jar in the freezer overnight!
- The next day, the fat has solidified on top of the spirit.
- Use a knife to make a hole through the congealed fat! Strain the fat-washed spirit through a cheesecloth!
- Strain for a second time through a coffee filter to remove any left over fat particles!
Good combinations for fat-washed alcohols are:
- Rum and coconut oil
- Vodka and truffle oil
- Bourbon and melted smokey bacon fat
- Vodka or gin and olive oil
- Vodka or mezcal and avocado oil
- Gin and sesame oil
- Gin and milk
- Tequila and buttered popcorn
- Scotch and brown butter
- Calvados and duck foie gras fat
Ultrasonic Devices for Mixology
Hielscher Ultrasonics offers various models of compact ultrasonic devices for the use in bars and restaurants. Our hand-held device UP200Ht (200W) with digital control and colored touch display is the most popular ultrasonicator for bartenders and mixologists. The UP200Ht is a light-weight, compact device, that delivers up to 200 watts. With its reliable and continuous high power output, the UP200Ht supplies the energy needed to form fine emulsions and nanoemulsions. Such fine size emulsions are essential to extract flavor components and to infuse spirits. The unique design makes the UP200Ht an eye-catcher in every bar. It impresses bartenders and patrons with visual and gustatory results.
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Facts Worth Knowing
Benton’s Old Fashioned is probably the most famous drink including bacon-fat infused bourbon as a key ingredient. The first appearance made Benton’s Old Fashioned in New York, where it has been created 2008 by Don Lee at the PDT (Please Don’t Tell). The PDT ist one of Manhattan’s most prominent bars.
- 2 oz bacon fat-washed Bourbon
- 1⁄4 oz Grade B maple syrup
- 1 twist Orange peel
- 2 dash Bitters, Angostura
With the right ingredients on hand, a Benton’s Old Fashioned is quickly prepared. The ingredients are stirred in a mixing beaker. The mix ist then strained and poured over a large ice cube in a lowball glass. Garnish with an orange twist!
Other popular cocktails, which feature fat-washed liquors as their essential key component, are Coconut Negroni (using coconut fat-washed pisco), Duck Hunt (with duck fat-washed bourbon), Iberico-Bourbon (with pork-fat washed bourbon), Buck-Butter (with nutmeg butter-washed bourbon), or Polynesian Pearl Diver (with butter-washed scotch).