The story of the crane
Magical, long-lasting, mysterious - everything that a crane embodies
The headquarters of Wise Grus is located in the city of cranes, Daruvar. Since the reign of Count Jankovic and the construction of a magnificent castle in the center of present-day Daruvar, the crane has been a ubiquitous bird: on the coat of arms and the city’s name itself. The name Daruvar was given to the city in 1771 when the count began building the castle, known as the Crane’s Castle.
Among the ancient Celts who were the first to settle in this area, cranes were divine messengers. Throughout history, ancient urns, weapons, helmets, and coins decorated with crane symbols have been found, indicating that the crane was a Celtic military symbol. Because of their upright appearance, the ancient Celts believed that cranes were originally humans. Magical, long-lasting, mysterious – everything that a crane embodies. Traditional, distinctive, home-made – everything that a brandy should be. Elegant, measured, and striking – everything that a brand can be – Wise Grus.
The creation process
Do you know how Wise Grus brandy is made?
Preparation of the fruit
The raw materials used for fruit brandy production must meet certain quality and maturity requirements. The chemical composition of the fruit is of utmost importance, specifically the ratio of sugars, acids, and aromas. The basic steps that must be taken at the Wise Grus distillery are washing and crushing (pressing) the fruit, adjusting the acidity of the fruit mash (by adding acids), adding pectolytic enzymes and yeast culture (Saccharomyces cerevisiae), and yeast nutrients. Washing the fruit is an important process for removing surface residues of soil, pesticides, green parts, and certain microbiological impurities (molds). To produce brandy, fruit must be well ground and, in the case of stone fruit, pitted! Separating the pit in stone fruits (plums, apricots, peaches) is very important to avoid brandies with high concentrations of hydrocyanic acid and ethyl carbamate (carcinogenic compounds!).
FERMENTATION (ALCOHOLIC FERMENTATION) OF FRUIT MASH
During alcoholic fermentation, the distillery pays attention to the temperature. It has been proven that yeast at lower fermentation temperatures produces more esters that contribute to fruity aromas. Accordingly, yeast selection was also carried out according to their tolerance to lower temperatures in the mash. The use of yeast with such characteristics enables fermentation to be carried out at lower temperatures in order to achieve better aroma and preserve fruity aromas.
Wise Grus distillery is equipped with a complex distillation apparatus which, in addition to classic parts, also has additional attachments, namely a deflegmator and a column for amplification. By passing alcohol vapors through these two attachments, the concentration of alcohol and other volatile components in the vapor phase is increased, resulting in higher alcohol strength and more intense aromas in just one pass through the distillation apparatus.
Young distillates require a certain maturation period in order for basic chemical processes such as oxidation, esterification, and acetalization to occur smoothly, which will make the distillate much smoother and more harmonious for drinking. The maturation process depends on the type of brandy and fruit, so some fruit brandies require a shorter maturation period, such as Williams pear brandy, unlike grape or plum brandy that mature in wooden barrels. Maturing the distillate in a wooden barrel positively affects the color, aroma, and taste of the future brandy. Compounds such as tannins, hemicellulose, and lignin are extracted from the barrel wood, giving the distillate a golden-yellow color and a vanilla and coconut aroma.
Perspective, ambition, future
“With love for nature and studying the legends of the Daruvar region, we at Wise Grus believe in long-standing, tested recipes and maintaining the tradition of enjoying a glass of premium brandy. We want to pass on this tradition to people all over the world so that they can better acquaint themselves with the culture and customs of the Daruvar region.”
“Producing high-quality brandy from locally grown ingredients according to traditional recipes. By combining tradition, ecology, and modern expression, we adapt our products to the era of sophisticated alcoholic beverages.”
“With love for nature and exploring the legends of the Daruvar region, we at Wise Grus believe in long-standing, tested recipes and the preservation of the tradition of enjoying a glass of premium brandy. We want to share this tradition with people all over the world in order to better acquaint them with the culture and customs of the Daruvar region.”