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Whisky Made From Diabetics' Urine 226

Posted by samzenpus
from the I've-tasted-this-before dept.
It's doubtful that any other distillery will come up with a whisky that tastes like Gilpin Family Whisky because of its secret ingredient: urine. Researcher and designer James Gilpin uses the sugar rich urine of elderly diabetics to make his high-end single malt whisky. From the article: "The source material is acquired from elderly volunteers, including Gilpin's own grandmother, Patricia. The urine is purified in the same way as mains water is purified, with the sugar molecules removed and added to the mash stock to accelerate the whisky's fermentation process. Traditionally, that sugar would be made from the starches in the mash."
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Whisky Made From Diabetics' Urine

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  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @05:04PM (#33429904)
    The sadder they are when mommy abandons them, the richer the taste.
  • Great! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by 18_Rabbit (663482) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @05:04PM (#33429910)
    But...why?
    • Re:Great! (Score:5, Funny)

      by sco08y (615665) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @05:30PM (#33430214)

      I figured it was the same reason they use it in American light beers.

      • by jgagnon (1663075)

        So very true...

      • Re:Great! (Score:4, Funny)

        by UnknownSoldier (67820) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @06:36PM (#33430830)

        That reminds me of that old Monty Python Joke...

        Q. Do you know why American beer is like making love in a canoe?
        A. It's fucking close to water.

        Anyways, I don't understand how Americans can drink that watered down [crap*] like Budweiser or Coors after tasting "real" beer like the Germans or Ale that the Bristish make...

        * No offense intended if you actually _like_ that stuff...

        • For what it's worth, some of us actually do enjoy the American style as well as the fuller more flavorful styles.

          Budweiser and Coors is crap. If you're looking for a halfway decent American lager, try Pabst Blue Ribbon or Narraganset. Much better flavor while still being an incredibly light beer.

          • by jgagnon (1663075)

            PBR is legendary... in a certain sense of the word legendary.

          • For what it's worth, some of us actually do enjoy the American style as well as the fuller more flavorful styles.

            Budweiser and Coors is crap. If you're looking for a halfway decent American lager, try Pabst Blue Ribbon or Narraganset. Much better flavor while still being an incredibly light beer.

            A friend of mine who is a. into good beer and b. emigrated to Germany fifteen or so years ago, had something to say on this issue. One of his friends is in the beer transport business in that fine country. That his, he is responsible for shipping mass quantities of brew from here to there (via train, truck and boat) and he takes that responsibility very seriously. Now,his take on matters was very interesting. He points out that American breweries actually do turn out some respectable product (and do so in i

            • Some styles just ship better. IPAs for instance were specifically designed to withstand transport. A subtle flavor profile with low ABV like a Pilsner lager probably responds very differently to abuse and age.

              • Some styles just ship better. IPAs for instance were specifically designed to withstand transport. A subtle flavor profile with low ABV like a Pilsner lager probably responds very differently to abuse and age.

                I have no idea what you just said but it sounded great.

          • by shawb (16347)
            Another good american lager. [newglarusbrewing.com]
        • by curunir (98273) *

          Hey...Budweiser is awesome! It's just a shame some enterprising individual in the late 1800s started selling (clydesdale) horse piss disguised as beer and stole the name to lend some credibility to his swill.

          If you want great beer, go Czech...German and British are merely well above average. There's a reason why the Czechs are the #1 per capita beer consumption country in the world [wikipedia.org].

          • There's a reason why the Czechs are the #1 per capita beer consumption country in the world [wikipedia.org].

            Yep, there's a reason all right, which may or may not have to do with the quality of their beer.

            Having said that, one of my favorites is Pilsner Urquell.

            • by mcvos (645701)

              When I was there, I learned that Pilsner Urquell is brewed to 12%, and then watered down to 3.1%.

              Also note that Budweis is also a Czech town. So aren't they really the ones to blame for lame beers?

        • * No offense intended if you actually _like_ that stuff...

          Corporal Hicks: None taken!

        • Bud is a great chaser to a neat jigger of Jameson but Coors is just gross.

          America is making some pretty amazing beers these days though that the curious or international crowds should try.

          I recommend these small breweries as their beers are generally available regionally or nationally in the USA:

          Yuengling, (A Real American Lager) Victory or Sly Fox (PA)

          Ommegang, Lake Placid and Brooklyn (NY)

          Anchor Steam (CA)

          • by jackbird (721605)
            Yuengling was never a microbrew, and is less so now that one of the majors bought the brewery (which was family-owned for ~200 years prior). Nevertheless, it's one of the only drinkable mass-produced beers around, and I'm very happy I now live in Philadelphia, where asking for a "lager" in a bar gets you Yuengling.

            I also want to plug Dogfish Head, in Delaware, consistently turning out a huge variety of extremely high-quality and creative beers. I'll also second the Victory recommendation, especially Hop D

        • Has to do with prohibition, WWII, all sorts of things.
          Basically before WWII Americans drank the same stuff as everyone else. Then when much of the male population went off to war, the brewing industry (still recovering from prohibition and which had mostly converted to soft drinks anyway) realized that they had to develop drinks that would appeal to women.

          Hence the lighter beers, along with advertising made to appeal to women "The Champagne of Beers," Miller "High Life" etc., all designed to sort of equate

        • As a brit living in America I've found that there are some extremely good beers here nowadays, especially around Portland, OR. I just drank a very good IPA from Terminal Gravity - live beer. The yanks have come a loooong way from Bud (which is now EU owned FWIW).

        • Feel free to offend people if they like it - they deserve it.

          As to why...

          I'm currently living in Wisconsin, the home of many such "piss-water beers". Also the home of some of the best beers I've ever had. Belgian style abbys and tripels, German style hefeweizen, English porters, Irish stouts, lambics, bachs, pilsners, etc. Take the best beers in the best traditions from Europe, and you'll find them here, recreated with 95% accuracy.

          So why do people drink the crap beers? That's an easy one. If you want
        • by istartedi (132515)

          The way I understand it, the homogenous mass-market American beer has something to do with the way the industrial revolution impacted the US. Cheap beer arrived with the railroad and squeezed out the competition.

          Then, prohibtion killed the industry for a while.

          We have Jimmy Carter (yes, Carter!) to thank for re-legalizing home brewing in the US. That set the stage for a craft brewing revival that seemed to peak in the late 90s along with dot-com. Many of those micro-brews survive, along with a number of

        • by mcvos (645701)

          "real" beer like the Germans or Ale that the Bristish make...

          You mention German and British beer, and fail to mention Belgian beer? Those people really know how to make good beer. Best beers in the world.

          • by binkzz (779594)

            "real" beer like the Germans or Ale that the Bristish make...

            You mention German and British beer, and fail to mention Belgian beer? Those people really know how to make good beer. Best beers in the world.

            Absolutely. Oh, except the Dutch beers of course. Heineken is the biggest beer supplier in the world! (unless you count Budweiser as being beer as well =( ).

      • by couchslug (175151)

        I'm an American and resent the offensive comparison of innocent urine to our loathsome fake "beer".

      • by FCAdcock (531678)

        At least this guy is brewing with it instead of just bottling it right from the "tap"

    • Re:Great! (Score:4, Funny)

      by bwayne314 (1854406) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @06:21PM (#33430686)
      they drink it because it's sterile and they like the taste
  • by multipartmixed (163409) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @05:07PM (#33429944) Homepage

    Americans have been making beer from urine for a century. I don't see how Whisky is a stretch.

    • by Bryansix (761547)
      Budweiser does kind of taste like piss.
      • by MBGMorden (803437)

        On what basis do you make the comparison? I mean sure, Bud is a bit nasty, but I have no fucking clue what piss tastes like so I don't know if they are similar.

        • They're not really similar, piss is kinda salty, but Bud is a little hoppier. Maybe if someone had been drinking a lot of beer their piss would taste a little like Bud.

        • by hedwards (940851)
          A significant amount of what we know as taste is actually smell.
          • by MBGMorden (803437)

            In which case I'd say that fresh popcorn tends to smell more like piss than Budweiser . . . .

    • by jez9999 (618189)

      Yep, in fact a lot of people don't realize that a now-antiquated term for diabetics' urine is "coors light". True story.

    • by nanoakron (234907)

      Reminds me of the old saying about European beer vs. US beer -

      "What we call lager, they call beer.

      What they call beer, we call piss."

      • by jgagnon (1663075)

        What they call piss we call...???

        Wine? :p

    • by MBGMorden (803437)

      Eh - our beer may leave something to be desired, but American whiskey is actually pretty darned good. I'd put Maker's Mark up against just about any of the foreign whiskeys.

      • I'd put Maker's Mark up against a foreign whiskey, then I'd leave it on the shelf as I drank the foreign stuff.

        I was at a bar once drinking Southern Comfort, the bartender suggested that if I liked the Southern Comfort, I'd probably also enjoy Maker's Mark. I have no idea where he got that idea from, Southern Comfort is, if anything, a little too sweet and smooth, but the Maker's Mark was like drinking sandpaper it was so rough. Not to bag on all American booze, but Maker's Mark is not the one I'd call out.

      • Just because your average beer guzzling nitwit doesnt know a hop if it hits him in the face, and therefore drinks bud, coors, etc, doesnt mean there arent some REALLY GOOD BEERS coming out of America! (I am a beer nut BTW, spending a month in Europe was what I call my "beer puberty") Some of my favorites come from the states. Dogfish head has some wonderfully complex brews, my favorite being Red and White. Some names off the top of my head that rock are: Three Floyds, Dogfish Head, Lost Abbey, Stone, Sam A

      • I know in the days before Sam Adams, your statement about US beer was the truth.

        Today, the US is easily the beer brewing capitol of the world. And its not even close. There are thousands of microbreweries putting out amazing beers. The sad fact is they don't really cost all that much more than the crap flooding all of our supermarkets.

        Seriously, go out and find some beers by Stone, Dogfish Head, Great Divide, etc.

    • Why is American Beer like making love in a row-boat?

      :-)

    • by Sulphur (1548251)

      Put it back in the horse.

      --

      Table for two, piss for one.

    • It makes sense - you drink piss to get pissed.

  • ...uses the sugar rich urine or elderly diabetics to make his high-end single malt whisky.

    The whiskey is made of PEOPLE!

    Now pardon me while I find a toilet.

  • Looks like just as porn drives the advances in computer technology, alcohol will drive the advances in renewable sources technology.
    Of course, now when someone says "this beer tastes like piss", you can tell them, it actually is piss. They then have the choice of running out and screaming "The booze is piss, people!"
  • Serious question (Score:4, Insightful)

    by by (1706743) (1706744) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @05:18PM (#33430090)
    Is there anything special about sugars extracted this way, other than the obvious shock value? Is it some trace amount of minerals they're after? I mean, for all I know I'm breathing oxygen atoms from dinosaur farts -- but it's exactly the same as oxygen atoms from any other source...
    • by hedwards (940851)
      I'm guessing that there's other stuff in there as well. Urine isn't purely one substance or another, it's water plus whatever salt and crap your kidney's felt like passing on.
    • No. Shock value only.
  • Yes, your blood sugar tends to rise as you get older, but if it's so high that you can extract useful amounts of sugar on it, you should be taking meds.

    The article says these are elderly diabetic patients. There's no reason for them to have higher blood sugar than anyone else - Banting and Best discovered insulin before most of them were even born.

    Sounds like either neglect or abuse to me.

  • by OrangeTide (124937) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @05:41PM (#33430312) Homepage Journal

    It's made from tears and broken dreams.

  • Couldn't they get the same taste just by making whiskey out of American beer?
  • Too! Much! Information!

  • I suppose it does look like corn mash liquid.

  • by dpbsmith (263124) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @06:15PM (#33430648) Homepage

    In Siberia, reputedly, there were tribes in which the religious shamans ate fly agaric, a psychedelic mushroom, to attain a religious experience, and his followers would then drink his urine, which contained the psychedelic substance, in order to share in the experience.

    • by RDW (41497)

      Well I've heard of a 'sugar high', but this really is taking the piss.

      The summary misses one rather important point from the original article: 'It's more of an art piece'. We are now entering the realm of sharks in formaldeyde, paintings rendered in HIV-positive blood, and unmade beds exhibited in galleries. In other news, an Artist is crafting Teddy bears from cured placentas (no, really). Normal rules do not apply.

      • Well I've heard of a 'sugar high', but this really is taking the piss.

        When you're done taking the piss, I've got a really good idea what we can do with it. I just need to dig out my old distillery.

  • I have a collection of fine vintage Whisky. Does this mean I can get to drink my best whisky twice?
  • Sure Budweiser and Coors deserve to be slammed, but America has a nearly endless selection of great beer. I'll take a local brewed double IPA over anything I've had during Oktoberfest in Munich. People who slam American beer probably weren't into beer to begin with.

    • Perhaps you hadn't heard. Anheuser-Busch is now owned by belgian InBev. Both Coors, and Miller, are now owned by canadian Molson.

      The argument that americans produce the world's pissiest-tasting beer in the world doesn't hold much weight anymore. Especially, when the largest american owned brewery is the Boston Brewing Company which brews the Sam Adams line of beers. Sam Adams might not be the greatest beer ever brewed, in the average beer drinker's, or beer snob's, opinion. However, its hardly the stereo

      • by Brickwall (985910)
        Both Coors, and Miller, are now owned by canadian Molson.

        Actually, not really true. The two companies merged, and control is shared between the Molson and Coors families. So, certain Canadians claim Molson's was taken over by Coors, and certain Americans claim the reverse. Later, they reached an agreement with Miller to do joint marketing, but it wasn't clear from the articles I read if this involved any change of ownership.

        • Ah, I see, even more complicated than I thought. I suppose it really depends on your viewpoint of what constitutes an american company, or more specifically an american owned company. I would have like to been in the board room when they decided whose name, Molson or Coors, came first in the merged entity.

          I get why Molson and Coors merged to better compete with big ol' Anheuser-Busch. Obviously, the mergers of brands associated with a particular national identity have done little to erode the definition

    • Oktoberfest is about quantity not quality. I would very much like to taste some quality American beers though, I'm sure there must be some but they don't seem to be exported to Belgium. Only the piss-poor stuff makes it over here, unfortunately.

  • Pure BS (Score:3, Interesting)

    by gregor-e (136142) on Tuesday August 31, 2010 @07:02PM (#33431022) Homepage
    The only time there is glucose in the urine is when blood glucose levels exceed the ability of the kidneys to resorb the glucose back into the blood - a threshold level that is typically quite high (200 ml/dl). People with diagnosed diabetes typically have their blood sugar under control, and therefore do not excrete glucose in their urine. Even in cases where people do excrete glucose in their urine, it is around only 1 gm per liter. When sugar ferments, roughly 50% of its mass is given up in carbon dioxide. Also, when making whiskey, only about half of the alcohol from a run is kept, that being the middle part of the run, known as the "hearts", while the "heads" and the "tails" of the run are discarded. So of each gram of piss-sugar collected (assuming 100% harvesting efficiency), only about 1/4 gm of ethanol ends up in whiskey. To make a 750 ml of 80-proof would require over 300 gm of alcohol, which would require 1200 gm of piss-sugar, which would require over 1200 liters (over 317 US Gallons) of piss. Adult humans produce an average of 1-2 liters of urine per day. So, to make an average bottle of average strength whiskey, they'd have to collect 100% of the sugar from the urine of a diabetic with uncontrolled blood sugar for the better part of a year. Sorry, that's just BS.
  • Is this a little cannibalistic or just gross?
  • ...don't tell people it's from grandma's piss, tell them it's from seriously hawt, but still diabetic, babes. I bet it would be the shiz!

Practical people would be more practical if they would take a little more time for dreaming. -- J. P. McEvoy

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