Yellowfin, Artisanal vodka making big splash

<p class="p1">While Jamison Trouth was earning a degree in chemical engineering, he and his buddies brainstormed about the kind of jobs they would like to have one day.

<p class="p1">Someone mentioned beverage making. “I like vodka, so I decided on that,” Trouth said.

<p class="p1">At first, he said, he considered small-batch distilling as only a hobby, but then thought “it would be nice if it was a hobby that would at least pay for itself.”

<p class="p1">In 2014 he quit his job at Sasol.

<p class="p1">This spring he released his first batch of Yellowfin Vodka, which is made from Louisiana cane sugar that’s fermented, distilled, filtered and bottled on East Burton Street in Sulphur.

<p class="p1">The combination of his chemical engineering degree, work experience, vodka research and small-scale home experimenting has helped set Yellowfin apart, Trouth said.

<p class="p1">“If I hadn’t seen the process up close, I wouldn’t have been able to make some of the adjustments I’ve made,” he said.

<p class="p1">Naming it was easier than perfecting the process, he said.

<p class="p1">Trouth said he likes spearfishing and considers yellowfin a premium treat — making the name of the fish great for the only vodka produced near some of the best fishing waters in the Sportsman’s Paradise.

<p class="p1">The label is distinctive. Friend and graphic artist Stacey Guilbeaux helped Trouth produce it.

<p class="p1">Yellowfin has made a splash, Trouth said. But he said his focus on quality, rather than quantity — the principle behind small-batch artisanal spirits — has made it challenging to keep up with demand.

<p class="p1"> “Some distilleries bypass the fermentation process and initial distillation steps altogether,” Trouth said. “They begin with neutral spirits, 95 percent alcohol by volume, bottle it in small batches and call that artisanal.”

<p class="p1">By definition, vodka is a neutral spirit, Trouth said. After distillation and filtering, it is without distinctive character, aroma, taste or color.

<p class="p1">Trouth said customers tell him that his vodka is so smooth they sip it. He said one customer, a vodka connoisseur, told him that only one “elite” brand comes close to the taste.

<p class="p2"><strong>Online:</strong> <a href="http://yellowfindistillery.com" target="_blank">http://yellowfindistillery.com</a>.yellowfin

<p class="p2"> ””<p>Yellowfin Vodka is produced at Jamison Trouth’s Sulphur distillery, 1716 East Burton St. (Rita LeBleu / American Press)</p>””<p>Every bottle of Yellowfin Vodka is capped with a glass cork. (Special to the American Press)</p>

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