The Beverage Alcohol Manual

I often get asked what is defines a Brandy, or what is the difference between all these whiskies. And all though recipe’s can change the TTB has some rules around

what you can call a spirit and what you can’t. These rules are part of the Beverage Alchohol Manual or BAM for short and within this document it contains the classes and types of spirits.


Let’s take a quick look. For a Brandy to be called and labeled a “Brandy” it has to be distlled solely from the fermented juice or mash of whole, sound, ripe fruit or from standard fruit wine and must be stored in oak containers for a minimum of 2 years.

TTB’s Beverage Alchohol Manual and check out Chapter 4, Class and Type Designation.

Final thoughts

So next time you are at the liquor aisle on your local super market, pay close attention to those labels and look for quality handcrafted local spirits.


Written on December 2, 2015