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Old 07-20-2012, 04:04 PM   #1
kevinb
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Default Bourbon soaked oak chips

I would like to make a beer that is aged in a Whiskey barrel. The problem is that I can't get my hands on one. Has any one ever tried to soak oak chips in bourbon for a while and then add to the secondary? Not sure how much to try.

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Old 07-20-2012, 04:12 PM   #2
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Yes. All the time. Search for "oak chips" or "bourbon oak" and you'll get a ton of helpful threads.

Amount depends on style, but 1-2oz chips in 4-8oz bourbon is plenty for most styles.

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Old 07-20-2012, 04:49 PM   #3
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sample frequently oak chips can quickly become overpowering. In future I think I am switching to oak cubes.

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Old 07-23-2012, 01:31 AM   #4
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How do cubes work differently than chips?

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Old 07-23-2012, 01:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinb View Post
How do cubes work differently than chips?
For the same weight there is less surface area, so takes longer to provide oak flavor to the beer.

That may seem to be a disadvantage to the cubes, but ........ due to their mass, they can provide a greater depth of flavors to the beer as it gets further into the wood, providing lots of vanilla flavors.
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:20 AM   #6
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Bourbon isn't bourbon until it extracts vanillin and other compounds from charred oak. Soaking oak in bourbon makes the oak less bourbony, not more. If you want your beer to be oaky, just throw the oak in the beer.

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Old 07-23-2012, 03:49 AM   #7
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But if you want bourbon in addition to oak, soak the chips/cubes in bourbon and add them along with the bourbon they were soaked in (4-8 oz as stated above). I put the bourbon through a coffee filter before adding it to filter out the carbon dust from the toasted oak.

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Old 07-23-2012, 03:56 AM   #8
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the allagash curieux thread taught me a lot about bourbon+oak. let the bourbon sit on the oak for a long time, preferably 4+ weeks, and do NOT pitch it with the cubes. it will be very, very tannic. if you want to up the bourbon, add it at bottling to taste

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