The distillation process goes through several stages involving different contraptions, containers, and compounds, and each one has its own name. The following terms can come in handy when you're discovering all there is to know about distillation:

  • Batch: Alcohol distilled in one limited run through the still.

  • Fermentation: The process by which microorganisms digest and convert carbohydrates (sugars and starches) to a liquid (alcohol) and a gas (carbon dioxide).

  • Milling: Procedure to strip away the outer covering of grains used in making distilled spirits.

  • Mash: Soupy mass of fermenting food from which spirits are distilled; the process of creating a mash is called mashing.

  • Neutral spirits: The ethyl alcohol collected and condensed during distillation.

  • Still: The container in which the alcohol/water liquid from fermented food is distilled.