Would you drink artificial booze to help save the planet?

29 August 2018 - 14:20
Scientists are trying to create synthetic spirits.
Scientists are trying to create synthetic spirits.
Image: iStock / Jonathan Austin Daniels

After lab-grown meat, the race is on to develop artificial wine and spirits. 

In a sprawling lab in San Francisco, chemists and scientists at Endless West are working on creating faux-whiskey as a more cost-effective, environmentally sustainable alternative to the real thing, reports TheVerge.com

It's the same principle that birthed faux-meat brands like Impossible Burger and Beyond Meat. 

But as The Verge author Alan Goldfarb points out, Endless West is one of several companies tweaking the traditional spirit-making process, which can require 20 years of aging before the product can hit liquor store shelves. 

Though the methods may vary - be it light and heat, pressurised environments or ultrasonic energy - companies like Lost Spirits, Cleveland and Whiskey and Terressentia are also looking for ways to expedite the aging process of spirits. 

Where Endless West is unique, however, is its quest to create a brown spirit, be it rum, bourbon or whiskey entirely from test tubes and beakers using science and laboratory chemistry. 

The company recently underwent a rebrand: Previously it was called Ava and concentrated on creating grapeless wine.

Though details on the website are scarce, Endless West says a new product will be coming this fall.