Fat Washing For Dummies
Q: What is Fat-Washing?
A: Fat-washing is a technique that allows for texture as well as savoury flavours to be infused into a spirit. At Crazy Gin, we fat-wash with ghee (clarified butter) melt and then stir it into our gin to bind the fat to the alcohol. We then freeze the mixture, which allows the fat to solidify at the top but not the gin, due to its high alcohol content. We then remove the frozen ghee and filter the gin that has been infused with buttery goodness.
Q: Is Ghee the only fat that can be used to fat-wash?
A: No! The cool thing about fat-washing is that you can use all kinds of fats and oils. One of the coolest fat-washing techniques we’ve seen was done by Rich Woods where he used the fat from wagyu beef to fat-wash whisky. Another great use of fat-washing is Don Lee’s famous bacon infused bourbon for his Benton’s Old Fashioned at PDT. We’ve even read about a Sazerac that was fat-washed with duck fat so it's pretty clear that when it comes to fat-washing, you’re really only limited by your imagination.
Q: Why Fat-Wash with ghee?
A: To provide our drink with a smooth finish we could think of no better way than fat washing our gin. We wanted the delicate spices to come through without the harshness traditionally associated with spirits. Ghee seemed liked the perfect fat to use as we had grown up using it to provide much needed relief when our parents would make us a spicy curry that was a bit too hot for us to handle! If it worked in the food we couldn’t see why it wouldn’t work in a drink and much to our delight it has worked very well in the gin indeed. For more information on ghee please see our previous blog “The magic three: Turmeric, yoghurt and Ghee”
Q: Can I Fat-Wash at home?
A: Yes you can! Fat-washing can be done at home as long as you have some fat, some alcohol, a freezer, and a straining appliance (mesh strainer, cheesecloth etc)
Q: Where can I go for more information about Fat-Washing?
A: If you’re looking for greater knowledge on fat-washing you can check out the book ‘Liquid Intelligence: The Art and Science of The Perfect Cocktail’ by the (unofficial) king of alcohol, Dave Arnold. In the section on fat-washing he goes in depth on the different fat to alcohol ratios depending on the different kinds of fats being used. Here’s a link that you might find helpful as well if you’re looking for a quick and easy fat-washing method: http://www.cocktailsandbars.com/fat-washing-how-to-fat-wash-alcohol/