Step 4: Hard Liquors.
*Making a Hard Liquor
To make a hard liquor you must first have a still. Which is illegal to own with out a permit (I think, I know it's illegal to distill). A still is the key to making a hard liquor because like previously discussed yeast will die in more than 15% alcohol making it nearly impossible to get a higher alcohol content. Stills function on a simple process of boiling alcohol into vapor and running that vapor through copper tubing which cool the vapor down which in turn condenses the alcohol back into a more pure liquid state. The result is a hard liquor.
Now some of the more key parts. I'm sure you thinking well how does it get the alcohol to boil off with out boiling the water off. Well, alcohol has a lower boiling temperature, which is around 72'C (173'F), enabling the alcohol to be boiled off leaving less pure and less alcoholic water (and what ever was in the water, yeast, fruit/grain .etc). You must be careful though too much heat and the water will boil also which makes it less alcoholic (It's practically impossible to make a pure alcohol with out extra chemicals because of the bond between the alcohol and water).
Lately, brewers have started a new method called freeze distillation which instead of boiling off the alcohol, you freeze the water leaving you with alcohol.
After distillation some hard liquors have sugars and flavoring added to them for taste purposes, others are diluted with water after a very through distillation (2 or more times) to lower the alcohol content, and also take away flavor for mixing drinks creating a neutral liquor such as vodka or gin.