fusel oil

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

The word "fusel" comes from German Fusel, which is used to refer to low-quality alcoholic beverages in general, especially to inferior wines and spirits distilled with inadequate equipment.

Noun[edit]

fusel oil (plural fusel oils)

  1. A mixture of several higher-order alcohols (alcohols with more than two carbon atoms) formed as byproduct in the normal fermentation process. An excessive concentration, as in low-quality moonshine, causes unpleasant taste.
    • 2006, Thomas Pynchon, Against the Day, Vintage 2007, p. 849:
      many simply blamed [...] the Doosra's known enthusiasms for opium, ganja, and any number of local fusel oils, singly or combined, named and nameless.

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