Wow...I made my first batch this past Thanksgiving; 1 gallon for this xmas and 1 gallon for next year. We polished off the first gallon at a gathering of friends about 3 weeks into the brew time (to rave reviews). Looking forward to using the other gallon this xmas, I already made another batch to save for next year.
For the gallon I originally expected to use this year, I added the egg whites at the start. There was some separation (foamy), but some shaking during the melding period took care of that.
I used Maker's Mark, Meyer's rum, and Courvoisier. I still don't really understand the aluminum foil wrap, but I won't question it at this point.
Thanks to everyone for this long line of posts. It gave me the confidence I needed.
Cheers to all...