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Old 11-17-2011, 07:45 PM   #1
ChadChaney
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Default RIS w oak cubes, pepper tea, etc...

So I am attempting to make an Imperial Russian Stout, well the beer making part will be easy, but the secondary additions are giving me some questions. I am planning on using American Oak cubes with medium toast and I plan on soaking them in Port first. How long do I need to soak them, I was thinking about 2 weeks or the length of the fermentation. Do I need to sanitize them first, or will the alcohol in the Port be enough? How long do I need to condition the RIS to get some oak quality? I am also going to be adding vanilla bean, small amount, and chili pepper of some sort. Thinking of Ancho, but regardless, I will be using the pepper tea method to get the right amount into the beer. I will also be adding coco nibs to this, kind of a lot going on, but really excited! Any and all suggestions appreciated!

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Old 11-17-2011, 07:51 PM   #2
Kealia
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FWIW, I did a clone of Firestone Walker's Double Barrel Ale and added oak cubes 5 days into primary. I left them for a week and after a standard conditioning time (for me of 2 weeks to carb + 2 weeks conditioning) the oak flavor was awesome. Same cubes you're using.

As the bottles aged over the next few months I noticed that the oak flavor continued to become more prominent as well.

Just my experience...hopefully it helps some.

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Old 11-19-2011, 01:46 AM   #3
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Everything you want to add must be sanitized. I'm not sure the port has enough alcohol to sanitize. Usually people use vodka or bourbon. You might want to just soak everything you want to add in bourbon and then add the whole concoction into the beer. Also, 24 hours is enough to sanitize in a high enough alcohol solution.

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Old 11-19-2011, 02:03 PM   #4
Kealia
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I've not sanitized the oak cubes when I've used them. I bought them from MoreBeer and they came in an airtight foil package just like you buy hops in. I know that some people do steam them, though.

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