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Old 11-23-2010, 03:19 PM   #11
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TOP THE HEAD SPACE WITH CARBONATED BEER!!!!!
Head space is the big problem, For my 19 L barrel what i do is brew enough beer to keep half a corny keg full, i carbonate it and keep it for head space topping up, ( and sampling)

Topping up with carbonated beer is far superior because your always purging the head space as the co2 is released. just put an airlock in the bung and your gold.

This also give you a base of reference as well as to how far your beer is oaked

Keep it cold 40F or below is best for aging in my opinion with an oak barrel, you'll have very little head space evaperation at this temp, any bacteria have a hard time multiplying and you still get oak imparting

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Old 12-25-2010, 03:17 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by I_B_Mongo View Post
I also bought one of the barrels last year. I've run several beers through it, and they've all been good. You do have to increase your aging times, as the flavors do get stripped over time, but between beers I just pour in a fifth of Jack Daniels. Doesn't fill it up, but I just give the barrel a good shake and a quarter turn every day. Helps to keep the barrel wet inside and, maybe, the alcohol helps keep the critters at bay?
This whole thread has been very helpful as I received a brand new barrel for christmas, this one to be exact...http://www.barrelsonline.com/ShowProduct.aspx?ID=19

My concern is with how new it is/how long i should keep my first batch in there (especially since its 2.5 gallons)

BUT my question, instead of Jack Daniels can I use wine while not using the barrel for beer? Seems to me it would have the same effect only difference is that I could get more vinous qualities than bourbon. No?
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Old 12-26-2010, 02:02 AM   #13
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BUT my question, instead of Jack Daniels can I use wine while not using the barrel for beer? Seems to me it would have the same effect only difference is that I could get more vinous qualities than bourbon. No?
Yes. You can use wine. It all depends on what qualities your looking for in your beer. Russian River and Lost Abbey use wine barrels for some of their beers with some amazing results! Just be sure to take some taste samples every week or two to see how its developing. You don't want to get too much oakyness, as it takes a LONG time to age out.

Good luck, and save a bottle for me.
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Old 12-09-2011, 06:44 AM   #14
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Old thread but I had a question. I recently came across a 6.9 barrel of whiskey as an early birthday present. It smells glorious! Do you guys think that is too big for us 5 gallon batchers? Or should I chug this thing away? Thanks for your suggestions!

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Old 12-23-2011, 05:33 AM   #15
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I would probably say that would be a perfect size for a primary fermentation considering my primary is 6.5 gallons.

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Old 01-02-2012, 05:46 PM   #16
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Me and my brewing partner have used oak barrels a few times now for making beer (a maple porter once, a barley wine another time, etc) and have had a good deal of success. I picked up a 5 gallon barrel from 1000 Oaks Barrel company (in VA in think), here is their website: Thousand Oaks Barrel Co.. The first barrel I had gotten from them actually had an issue where it expanded causing one of the metal bands around it to snap. They were incredibly apologetic and shipped us a new barrel free of charge. The longest we ever aged anything was 2 months. One thing we noticed was that the barrel definitely seems to tone down any hop characteristics you may be looking to achieve so I would hop perhaps a bit more aggressively than you would normally to hedge against this.

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Old 01-14-2012, 07:27 PM   #17
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I have a 5 gal new oak barrel that my brewing fan club (children) gave me for Christmas. How much extra hopping do you suggest? 3 oz instead of two of bittering hops for example. I am planning a pilsner for first try. Midwest's "this bud's for you" to be specific. Two weeks primary rack to the barrel and two or three weeks there in secondary then into the bottles. The barrel is charred but unused.

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Old 03-05-2012, 03:10 PM   #18
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Default Best Malt Vinegar ever...

So my much anticipated "Oaked" Porter is vinegar.

I have two questions:

Can the oak cask be salvaged and used for beer again?

Fish and Chips anyone?

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Old 03-14-2012, 05:03 PM   #19
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So does one put a beer through a week of primary fermentaion or so, rack the beer to a bottle bucket with priming sugar (or put the sugar in the barrel for that matter) and age for a while, topping up and taking periodic samples? Wondering because I have a new 5 gallon white oak barrel on its way. Anyone with a good recipe or processes with any advice? thanks

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Old 04-19-2012, 09:11 PM   #20
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Default Whisky barrels

I recently purchased a small 20 liter used oak barrel from Grand Traverse Distillery in Traverse City, Michigan, but haven't used it yet. The distiller said he sold old barrels to some small breweries, I assumed he mean't large barrels. I planned to use it for brewing normal 5 gallons batch.

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