How to test the alcohol content of mash

Determine alcohol content

Exact determination of the alcohol content

using semi-microdistillation and refractometer

If you make schnapps yourself, the alcohol content of the distillate is determined using a hydrometer. The direct measurement of the exact alcohol content of beverages containing sugar and extract such as Liqueur, beer, liquor, wine or mash with simple measuring devices such as hydrometers, refractometers or vinometers, however, is not possible, as the dissolved sugar and extract content are extremely disruptive. The sample must therefore be distilled beforehand. The distillate (schnapps) is free from interfering ingredients, so an exact measurement is possible with e.g. a refractometer. However, the volume of the sample has changed as a result of the distillation (but not the amount of alcohol in the case of complete distillation), so the measurement result must be converted accordingly.

Volume before distillation: 0.50 ml

Alcohol content of the distillate: 12.00% vol

Volume of the distillate: 0.41 ml


The alcohol content of the sample is 9.30% vol

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