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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Whiskey Soaked Oak cubes and a Stout
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Old 12-08-2011, 02:25 PM   #11
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On the subject of adding oak, you guys ever oak age in the keg?

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Old 12-08-2011, 03:20 PM   #12
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That's a good point. Of course those cubes are also soaking that flavor back up too. I believe there are many layers of oak flavor that come over time and you're just dialing back the most up-front, pungent ones but not pitching the whiskey. I guess it depends on what you're going for. It's like when breweries use old barrels from distillers - the first batch in the barrel is potent, oak-whiskey punch to the face. The next batch is much more mellow and so on...
Alright, I will start with the cubes, and some of the Old No.7, and taste accordingly.

This is my first attempt at oaking a beer and I don't want to ruin it, especially since I plan to bottle rather than keg this one for some long term storage.

Thanks for the advice.

Cheers!
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Old 12-08-2011, 06:07 PM   #13
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This brings on another question, wouldn't the whiskey have extracted alot of the oak flavor from the cubes, hence requiring adding the whiskey into the beer?
The whiskey will def pick up a ton of oak flavors. I would reserve the extra-oaked whiskey to add back at bottling time (to taste). I did this with an oaked porter I just bottled and the results were good.

Other threads have recommended not using the whiskey from the soak stage b/c of 'sawdust' flavors... I tried the whiskey off my chips and it was delish, so I decided to use it. YMMV.
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Old 12-09-2011, 03:37 AM   #14
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I removed all the oak cubes from the jar with a slotted spoon, and weighed them. I added a proportional amount. The original weight was 4oz, but soaked the cubes weighed 6.2oz, so I added 3.1 oz of the oak cubes which in relation would be equivalent to 2oz of dried.

I also added 4 oz of the whiskey infusion since it smelled magnificent. So that is the start, I will sample after 2 weeks, and every two weeks afterward until I feel the flavor is right.

I am going to bottle this batch, any suggestions on yeast? I have some S-04, and S-05, I definitely wont be adding any liquid cultures to this, Notty might be a good choice too since it is clean at lower temps. I don't want the bottling yeast to add any flavors.

Any suggestions would be appreciated, thanks!

FWIW, the original yeast was WLP013

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Old 12-09-2011, 04:35 AM   #15
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Sounds delicious! I put a couple gallons of my breakfast stout on tart cherries too that I'm thinking of maybe blending with the bourbon oaked batch at a later date!

I used s-04 for my ferment. Are you sure you'll need to add more yeast at bottling? I haven't read much about yeast amount/vitality after extended ageing....

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Old 12-09-2011, 06:56 AM   #16
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Sounds delicious! I put a couple gallons of my breakfast stout on tart cherries too that I'm thinking of maybe blending with the bourbon oaked batch at a later date!

I used s-04 for my ferment. Are you sure you'll need to add more yeast at bottling? I haven't read much about yeast amount/vitality after extended ageing....
Yeah, I cold crashed at 33°F +/- 1°F for 48 hours, and the beer will secondary for at least 3+ weeks so I am almost certain that I will have to add yeast at bottling.

Whatever will impart the least flavor is what I am shooting for. Probably S-05, or Notty I'd assume.

I do have some Belgian liquid WLP530, but that will definitely add a little funky flavor to it which I am trying to avoid. I want the barrel aged flavor to shine.
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Old 12-11-2011, 01:54 AM   #17
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To echo others, its all about taste. I have a stout that has been aging on oak since January 2nd. The first 6 months on 1 ounce, and I added another ounce in late june. It now has a complex and smooth oakiness. Its now getting some vanilla bean treatment before I bottle this beast soon.

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Old 12-11-2011, 03:28 AM   #18
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I would use netural grain spirits over malted spirits. The oak flavor should come through. Perhaps do 2 ounces of burbon soaked and 2 ounces of vodka soaked... I'd leave it no more than three months then bottle asap. Some of these barrel aged beers take on too much of the booze flavor rather than the beer.

The finest example of distilled barrel aged beers would JW Lees Harvest Ale. They use burbon barrels, whiskey barrels and apple brandy barrels. Outstanding stuff. They also have a sherry cask beer. To die for...Good stuff.

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Old 12-23-2011, 06:29 AM   #19
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I would use netural grain spirits over malted spirits. The oak flavor should come through. Perhaps do 2 ounces of burbon soaked and 2 ounces of vodka soaked... I'd leave it no more than three months then bottle asap. Some of these barrel aged beers take on too much of the booze flavor rather than the beer.

The finest example of distilled barrel aged beers would JW Lees Harvest Ale. They use burbon barrels, whiskey barrels and apple brandy barrels. Outstanding stuff. They also have a sherry cask beer. To die for...Good stuff.
I assume they blend though. Am I correct?
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Old 12-23-2011, 02:33 PM   #20
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As Sebas83 mentioned, there doesn't seem to be a lot of quantifiable data for oaking so your best bet is probably do what your taste buds tell you.

I have 3 gallons of Founder's Breakfast Stout Clone sitting on 1 oz. of Hungarian Oak Cubes (I soaked the cubes in Woodford Reserve Bourbon for 2 weeks). After about 3 weeks I get maybe a hint of oak being there. I did my best to research this topic but didn't come up with much info. I anticipate leaving it on the oak through January or February.
.
Sorry to thread jack, but do you care to share your Breakfast Stout Clone recipe?
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