Buying a copper Alquitara still
The Alquitara copper still is a typical Spanish still. Having the condenser placed on the head, it is more compact than the Copper Column Alembic Still. The head consists of two parts and has three grids between which herbs, plants and flowers can be added. The second part of the head is fitted with a second grid to fit as much plant material as possible. The third grid ensures that the plant material is prevented from being carried into the condenser. There are two shorter copper ends on the condenser for water supply (lower copper pipe) and water discharge (upper copper pipe). The longer copper pipe from the condenser bucket carries the distillate. The copper Alquitara stills can be used to distil essential oils, such as fragrant lavender oil. Read more about making essential oils and hydrolates here. Our copper Alquitara stills are available for immediate delivery from stock. In addition, all stills come with heat-resistant sealing tape and hose clamps for the cooling water hoses. The distillers are deliberately fitted with heat-resistant tape (easy to remove after use) to make the connection to the cooling coil gas-tight, which is the safest method. If you wish to make essential oil with the copper Alquitara stills, the separation funnel is a handy accessory to order along. After the distillation process, the essential oil will float on the water. The separation funnel facilitates separating the liquids.
If desired, you can order hob, alcoholmeter, and turbo yeast or any other other accessories. When you start distilling liquor, you first need to make mash. This is made by adding turbo yeast together with tap water and sugar in a fermentation vessel. To siphon the wash from the fermentation vessel into the still, consider buying our siphon hose with filter. The stills can be used on any possible heat source: from hob to gas burner (except induction). We recommend heating the stills larger than 10 litres on a gas flame. To shorten the heating time, you advise to heat the 10-litre stills on a gas flame. In order to make rum, coffee liqueur, whisky and other liqueurs, you may add an essence to your home-brewed liquor. You will find these under accessories. Also have a look at our oak wooden kegs for storing and maturing drinks. More information on the process of making your own liquor can be found at our frequently asked questions and our blogs. All copper stills are manufactured in Europe.
How big is the distiller’s head?
We sell the Alquitara stills in different volume sizes from 2 litres to 30 litres. This capacity size refers to the amount of liquid that can fit into the lower part of the still, also called the pot. The plant material should be placed on a grid that is suspended in the pot of the Alquitara still just above the liquid/water in the pot. Thus, the plant material is partly in the pot of the Alquitara and also in the head (the upper part of the still). About as much plant material fits in the Alquitara stills as in the column stills. To get an estimate of how many herbs, plant material, flowers and other ingredients can fit in on the grids of the Alquitara stills, please refer to an overview of the dimensions of the column/basket for our copper column stills, as the contents are roughly the same.
What are the differences between the copper column stills and the Alquitara stills?
The Alquitara still is of a more compact design than the column still as its condenser is placed on top of the head. As for the quality and process of distillation, there is no difference. See the “additional information” tab for the dimensions of the overall setup of the selected copper Alquitara still.
How much essential oil is left after distillation?
This is a difficult question to answer. It depends on a large number of factors, including the type of plant material, the pruning phase of the plant material, the moisture of the plant material and the distillation process. From lavender branches, you are left with roughly 4 to 7 percent of the weight of plant material as lavender oil. But this can also differ per lavender species within the lavender family. To get an idea of different yields of essential oils, we refer to our blog: Making essential oil by steam distillation.
Legislation applies to distilling spirits. We are certified and we have a permit from customs to be allowed to sell these stills. Distilling water, essential oils, etc. is allowed in most countries. Distilling alcohol is only allowed in most European countries with an excise permit. When purchasing one of these appliances, or if you want to distil alcohol, you must therefore comply with the applicable legislation in your country.