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Old 01-25-2012, 12:53 AM   #1
hermsfun
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Default Head space in souring barrel

I just purchased an old very clean oak barrel and had 14 gallons of 3 month old Flanders red that I put in it. I sterilize the barrel by soaking it in a concoction of red wine and bourbon for 24 hours (Rotating every couple hours). Question is the barrel has 3-4 inches of head space after running the red in. Should I top it off? I was going to add some malto dextrin in a boiled solution so that would be a half gallon or so, but then what... A few bottles of red wine? A few bottles of jolly pumpkin... Thoughts? The red is souring already too I used the lambic blend instead of roselare. Ideas would be awesome!



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Old 01-25-2012, 01:00 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hermsfun
I just purchased an old very clean oak barrel and had 14 gallons of 3 month old Flanders red that I put in it. I sterilize the barrel by soaking it in a concoction of red wine and bourbon for 24 hours (Rotating every couple hours). Question is the barrel has 3-4 inches of head space after running the red in. Should I top it off? I was going to add some malto dextrin in a boiled solution so that would be a half gallon or so, but then what... A few bottles of red wine? A few bottles of jolly pumpkin... Thoughts? The red is souring already too I used the lambic blend instead of roselare. Ideas would be awesome!
I'd just throw in some DME or fresh wort. You will want to keep head space down to limit acetic acid production.


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Old 01-25-2012, 01:04 AM   #3
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Here's a shot of the barrel...

image-3746111680.jpg

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Old 01-25-2012, 01:22 AM   #4
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Very cool. My point though is that that barrel, no matter how well you cleaned it is still going to have some wild critters in there. Namely acetobacter which turns alcohol into vinegar. However acetobacter needs oxygen to work. So by topping off and limiting headspace you'll be limiting acetic acid production.

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Old 01-25-2012, 01:30 AM   #5
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Will do, how fast does that take affect? It's been two days now...

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Old 01-25-2012, 02:53 AM   #6
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I wouldn't be too worried about it at this point. Some acetic development is almost inevitable as wood is oxygen permeable. But that's not in and of itself a bad thing.



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