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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > Enough oak to be noticeable?
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Old 07-27-2010, 02:30 AM   #1
KyleWolf
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Default Enough oak to be noticeable?

Hey everyone,

So I am working on an Oaked Stock Ale. 1.060 SG, with an estimated FG of 1.018.

I added 1/2 of light toasted american chips at the beginning of fermentation, and and that is going to be in there for 2wks. After that I am adding 1/2 oz Medium/Heavy toast Hungarian cubes into the keg and *hopefully* just keep them there until I hit my desired taste. Is this going to be enough to get any oak flavor? Or should I add more? Don't want it to be over powering but I nice mild presence would be nice.

Oh, and I am dry hopping with 1oz of Pride of Ringwood (random, yes, I know)

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Old 07-27-2010, 03:09 AM   #2
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I use 4oz and it gives me a nice oak presence. Nothing to powerful. But it all depends on how long you age. I only age mine for 2 weeks usually.

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Old 07-27-2010, 03:11 AM   #3
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If my memory serves me right, Sam Calagione recommends 2oz per 5 Gallons of brew on the low end and 4 oz per 5 gallons on the high end (Obviously this can vary based on chip strength) .

However, if you use the cubes you mentioned, you might be able to eventually hit the level you want. I just don't know how long it will take.

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Old 07-27-2010, 03:20 AM   #4
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I have more chips and cubes, I can always add more chips to the primary (still has a week left). Maybe I will add another oz.

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Old 07-27-2010, 04:19 AM   #5
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I have more chips and cubes, I can always add more chips to the primary (still has a week left). Maybe I will add another oz.
If in that week you take a small sample and it needs more oak, just leave it in the primary for another week with the additional chips/cubes. I don't see any harm in that.
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Old 07-27-2010, 07:05 PM   #6
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With that low amount, you won't get much oak flavor, but you will still get some oak impact - mouthfeel and structure. For an old ale, Id' do 2 oz of cubes for 5 gallons and age that beer for a good 3 months on the cubes. Taste and age longer if needed.

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Old 07-27-2010, 09:26 PM   #7
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Also remember that oak cubes impart a more complex oak flavor profile, but they also take a lot longer to work. A couple of weeks on chips is often sufficient where a couple of months on cubes would be needed.

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Old 07-27-2010, 09:38 PM   #8
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The thing to remember is you can always add a bit more oak, but once you have overdone the oak it is much harder to undo it. I recently listened to a Brewing network Sunday Session on using oak and I learned some interesting things. One of them is that one of the flavors produced by oaking is a vanilla flavor. It is the same chemical make up of vanilla, and yeast uptake vanilla during fermentation. So when you oak in the primary you get the other characteristics of oaking, but you lose much of the vanilla.

I would go ahead and add your planned 1/2 oz and maybe up to 1 oz of cubes in the keg and just check the flavor every couple days. I just did an oaked beer in which I soaked 1 oz of oak cubes in about 5 oz of Bourbon for 3 days then added the chips and the remaining bourbon to a 3 gallon keg of old/stock ale. The bourbon really helps pull the oak flavor out and I had a nice oak in the keg after about 7 days and took the beer off the oak. I definitely could have done it with a bit less oak cubes. The preferred method is smaller amount of oak for longer period of time.

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Old 07-27-2010, 10:33 PM   #9
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I will take a sample tonite and see what I think. I may add another 1/2oz of chips for one wk, and then do 1oz of cubes in the keg.

On a side note, I do have a slight worry about infection of this beer. It has been a week and when I opened it on sunday to take a gravity reading and add my dry hop, there was still a slight krausen on it, no more than 1/4in thick but covered a majority of the brew. There really is nothing to do about it until later, so, I think I will have a homebrew

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I have also been to the bar tonite...so my evaluations may be skewed.
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Primary 1:Honey Rye Saison
Primary 2:
Primary 3:
Secondary:
Secondary:

Up next: Rye Amber Ale, Brett Braggot.
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Old 07-28-2010, 02:17 PM   #10
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I have a barley wine with oak aging right now. I threw in 1.5oz of med toast hungarian. I will try it today or tomorrow to check on oak level. If it's strong enough I'll bottle if not I'll check it again mid August. I stuck to oak in at the beginning of June.

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