We are now moving into our scheduled summer pause in distillation to allow for our annual check on the boiler, which will be stripped down and minutely examined for any issues before being re-assembled and fired up again. We expect to load another mash around the 11th August with distillation starting again a couple of days after that.
Summer is the the best time to do scheduled maintenance because the higher temperatures have a number of consequences which combine to make both fermentation and distilling spirit harder – the higher water and air temperatures make cooling the stills more difficult and can speed the fermentation up. As you know, we like to do everything as slowly as possible here.
The one downside of pausing distillation during the summer is of course that our visitors do not get to see the beautiful old Victorian machinery in action and miss out on the sights and aromas, the heat and the noise. But even that has its positive side: when else can you get to peer into the cavernous interiors of the stills? And, of course, it gives us a little more time to simply stop and talk.