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Old 09-01-2009, 01:30 AM   #1
Guy03
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Default How do I use a Bourbon Barrel

I have been lucky enough to get my hands on a bourbon cured oak barrel. I want to make a Bourbon stout with it but am not sure exactly when to place beer into the barrel. I dont have any experience with barrels and would love any advice on how to use them.

Thanx,
Guy



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Old 09-01-2009, 01:34 AM   #2
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You ship the barrell to me for proper disposal.

Lucky guy!!!!

I have never used one, but THIS podcast from Basic Brewing Radio has great info on that subject.

Quote:
05-10-07 Basic Brewing Radio - Aging with Oak
Thursday, May 10, 2007 4:30 PM
Dan Carey, Brewmaster of New Glarus Brewing Company in New Glarus, Wisconsin, shares his tips on aging beer in oak chips and in oak barrels.

Click to Listen-mp3
Like I said, if it all sounds too difficult, my offer still stands.

Welcome, by the way!


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Old 09-01-2009, 01:48 AM   #3
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Hey thanx, i paid 150 for it its 5 gallons, If you were interested I can get my hands on more just let me know....

Thanx,
Guy

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Old 09-04-2009, 08:58 PM   #4
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Has anyone used one before, some more tips would be appreciated

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Old 09-04-2009, 09:35 PM   #5
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Our homebrew club has used many barrels. All of the barrels we have used were recently emptied of their previous contents so I'm not 100% sure about new barrel or "not used recently" barrel procedures. Seems like Lairds Applejack and red wine barrels are the norm for us.

Here's a good start:
Oak Barrel Prep - Wine Making Info

We typically emptied the remaining contents into a container either for consumption or just to drain it. In the case of bourbon there should be no lees at the bottom of the barrel. There may be some bourbon still in there that you can drink!! We made a flemish red in a old cabernet barrel, and saved some of the wine that was left over to see if there was any flavor incuded into the beer from that. The lees from the wine were rinsed out.

Get some REALLY hot water and pour it into the barrel. The idea here is to kill off anything living in there, and swell up the wood. It seems some people swell the wood for some time, but if it was recently and previously used you can just check for any leaks and wait maybe 30 minutes. Swirl the hot water around to get contact on all sides.

Once you are certain there are no leaks, empty your water and siphon your brew in! Voila! Use a wine thief to test out your brew from time to time. Newer barrels impart more flavor. You may want to make a little extra brew that's bottled so you can top off the barrel. The barrels will evaporate off water over time and the liquid level will drop. You'll want to refill that space with more beer (or not). Its really cool to do a post barrel taste test to see what your beer was like before and after the barrel aging!

Be prepared for some blow off when you rack into the barrel. CO2 that's in suspension has a tenancy to come out... it can make a mess! If it foams up you'll have some brew on the floor.

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Last edited by sirsloop; 09-04-2009 at 10:13 PM.
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Old 09-04-2009, 10:11 PM   #6
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This may be a silly question, but are you in Albany, NY? If you happen to be in Albany, GA I might be interested in a barrel.

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Old 09-07-2009, 11:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nealf View Post
This may be a silly question, but are you in Albany, NY? If you happen to be in Albany, GA I might be interested in a barrel.
Yes I am in albany N.Y., but if you would be willing to pay for shipping I would be willing to do that...Let me know


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