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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Lambic & Wild Brewing > Lambic Aging in Oak
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Old 04-21-2010, 12:52 AM   #1
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Default Lambic Aging in Oak

Has anyone ever aged a lambic in oak? How did you like it compared to a carboy, and did you add fruit in the barrel?

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Old 04-21-2010, 03:23 AM   #2
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We did a Kreik on oak for a year. It's wonderful. I added cherry concentrate at month 5.

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Old 05-05-2010, 01:04 PM   #3
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i don't add fruit in the barrel, but i do have a some oak projects. the sour beers from the barrel are much more sour than the ones in carboys and the sours in carboys are pretty darn sour to begin with! currenly only one of my barrels is soured, but the other will be in a matter of time.

i think these oaked sour/lambics will have to be backsweetened, blended or will just be puckeringly sour.

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Old 05-05-2010, 02:21 PM   #4
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It's all a matter of taste I suppose. I tasted a straight lambic at the NHC last year that was in oak for 4 years. Yes, I definitely lost some enamel off my teeth, but I didn't think it was bad at all. I think it's just like hops. SNPA is so freaking bitter and one day you think Stone IPA is just right. Granted, I do backsweeten my lambic at pour time about half the time.

Sour beers go more acidic in a barrel because Acetobactor works aerobically to make acetic acid (vinegar). Oak will take in a lot more O2 than a sealed carboy.

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Old 05-10-2010, 10:17 PM   #5
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I believe many many Belgium lambics are aged in oak

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Old 05-11-2010, 12:26 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M View Post
It's all a matter of taste I suppose. I tasted a straight lambic at the NHC last year that was in oak for 4 years. Yes, I definitely lost some enamel off my teeth, but I didn't think it was bad at all. I think it's just like hops. SNPA is so freaking bitter and one day you think Stone IPA is just right. Granted, I do backsweeten my lambic at pour time about half the time.

Sour beers go more acidic in a barrel because Acetobactor works aerobically to make acetic acid (vinegar). Oak will take in a lot more O2 than a sealed carboy.
I wonder if the added sourness is a result of wood tannins being extracted or from the bugs being excited by the increased O2? Probably a little of both, I assume.
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Old 05-11-2010, 04:40 PM   #7
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I think the single biggest thing you can do to improve sours is barrel aging them.

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Old 06-10-2010, 07:08 PM   #8
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What size barrels are you all using? I'm thinking about getting a 20L barrel, would a year be too long in such a small barrel?
Bobby do you get yours locally? I was thinking of contacting some NJ wineries to see if they have any small used ones they want to sell.

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Old 06-10-2010, 08:17 PM   #9
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I was thinking of contacting some NJ wineries to see if they have any small used ones they want to sell.
i've looked all over and you're not gonna find any places in NJ that sells small barrels. while i haven't called to inquire from EVERY winery, every place that had them available were the standard 55 gal barrel for ~ $50. the most interesting place that had 'em was Applejacks and they sold them for $50 too if i remember correctly. 55 gal is way too big for me, though. esp since i have very few friends that would be able to contribute to such a large barrel.
http://www.lairdandcompany.com/index2.htm

i have a 5 gal and 3 gal barrel that i use, but each are a little larger than the stated size. the best place to get one is from Infidel in the classifieds section. It looks like it might be the last opportunity you have to get one from him so take advantage. they are REALLY nice and would definitely recommend one!!
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f16/5-2-...90-s-h-178490/

oh, and yes one year would be way too long in a barrel that size. I think one month is comparible to 6 months in a smaller barrel due to surface area contact. On the same note, a barrel stripped of it's oak flavor might be okay for any amount of time since it won't be leaching the heavy oak flavor. 1 year in a 5 gal barrel is a lot in regard to the lost beer from angels share, though.
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