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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Bought a bag of oak chips from LHBS, they have no scent?
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:59 AM   #1
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Default Bought a bag of oak chips from LHBS, they have no scent?

I really figured they would have a heavy wood scent to them, but there's close to no smell from these chips. I have a stout that I am wanting to oak to get some vanilla flavors added in. I'm thinking of using 1 oz of the chips for a 5 gallon batch. The chips do not specify the type of oak (i.e. light, medium, dark). Anyway, this is my first time using them and wonder if I am missing something here or if they will work just fine...

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Old 03-10-2013, 05:47 AM   #2
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I built cabinets for three years. Freshly cut oak had a smell to it, but once it had cured for a bit, oak typically had very little smell to it at all. I wouldn't worry about it.

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Old 03-10-2013, 05:47 PM   #3
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Yeah,not much aroma when the resins have dried. If the bag doesn't medium or dark toast,then they might not be toasted at all.

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Old 03-10-2013, 06:14 PM   #4
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I think I got the same chips as you did. Doesnt even say light toast or anything. I loved em.Made me a great amber with them.Very nice vannilla tones as well. You may notice a smell if you boil them in a little water,I think I even sampled the water.You should get a nice vannilla quality out of them. I think I used .5 oz for a 1.5 gal batch for about 5 days.Turned out perfect, I did age the beer and it did fade out some,but at first I was like holy crap this is good and wanted to oak everything but of course I didnt.
How long are you going to oak them?

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Old 03-10-2013, 08:04 PM   #5
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Nice. Yeah, that's what I'm going for, just want some slight vanilla flavor. I'm planning on oaking it for a week.

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Old 03-26-2013, 04:43 PM   #6
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So, just an update. I went ahead and boiled about 3/4-1 oz of oak chips in about a cup of water for about 10 minutes. I think I should have strained the oak chips though, but instead I went ahead and tossed the chips and the water into the secondary and racked on top of it and let it sit for about a week. I'm getting some nice vanilla tones and definite wood flavor, but I'm also getting a lot of astringency. I think by boiling the chips I extracted a lot of tannins from the wood and dumping the water in with the chips in the secondary added the tannins into the beer.

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Old 03-26-2013, 05:51 PM   #7
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Could be. Try boiling some water next time,then take it off the heat,add the chips,& cover/steep for a while. Then add the chips & liquid. Steeping is a softer sort of heat than boiling.

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