What is Moonshine? – Quick Overview

Moonshine is known for being an excellent, homemade alcoholic drink. It has established a cult-esque following throughout parts of North America. Normally, Moonshine is produced using small-scale stills in remote locations. This is because moonshine producers intend to avoid the legal ramifications of obtaining a commercial still certificate.


Stills are made of copper or steel and a water-filled barrel with copper tubing as a condenser. This type of still is a favorite because of its simpleness as well as history within the moonshining world. Today, there are several do-it-yourself versions readily available online. These new moonshine techniques can be extremely harmful. When fermenting yeast, as well as sugar with each other, methanol can come to be a by-product and contaminate the moonshine with poisonous degrees of the gas.


Moonshine is made palatable and also safer by discarding what is known as “foreshot.” Foreshot refers to the initial few ounces of alcohol that trickles from the condenser at the beginning of manufacturing. These very first few drips consist of most, if not all,  the methanol from the mash. It additionally has trace quantities of various other harmful substances like acetone and aldehydes.


Another reason moonshine is scary is due to its high flammability. Any alcohol that is at least 80 proof indicating it is 40% alcohol by quantity can potentially be set ablaze. This is especially true during the distillation process when evaporated alcohol could penetrate the air if there is not appropriate air flow. Moonshine is also in some cases included with lye or beading oil to raise its alcohol content. This is very risky as this poisonous combination has been understood to cause blindness or even death.

High quality

The method many moonshiners use to check the quality of their batch is to put a small amount onto a spoon and light it on fire. The idea is that proper moonshine burns with a blue fire, and impure burns yellow. Although this examination will show the existence of lead, it cannot disprove the existence of methanol which sheds with an unseen fire.


Moonshining was born at an early stage in America’s growth. Shortly after the American Transformation, the United States located itself having a hard time to pay for the expenditures of a lengthy war. The solution they generated was to place a government tax on alcohol. Having just fought a war to get out from overbearing British taxes, the people were not thrilled with this brand-new regulation. Moonshining was born when individuals chose to begin making their very own whiskey, totally disregarding the brand-new government tax obligation.

For very early moonshiners, making and offering alcohol was not just for entertainment. Some made it through by transforming a miserable year of farming corn right into strong bourbon. This added earnings made their extreme frontier presence manageable. Government representatives were consistently attacked when they started to gather taxes. Throughout this time there was no type of therapy for alcoholism as people were interested in much better hazards. Addiction was barely even talked about during this time in America.

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