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Old 01-20-2012, 11:33 PM   #1
JDar1989
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Jan 2012
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I have a beer kit to make an "American Light Ale", and don't see myself drinking and enjoying 5 gallons of such a generic style. I had an idea to soak hickory chips in bourbon and add them to the secondary. Is this a good idea? How long should I soak the hickory chips? How much hickory would be appropriate to add to the secondary? Thanks for the help!

 
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Old 01-20-2012, 11:34 PM   #2
JDar1989
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add*** oops haha

 
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Old 01-20-2012, 11:39 PM   #3
unionrdr
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From past experience,I'd say 4oz hickory chips (well dried!) to 3 jiggers of bourbon. Soak in a tight lidded plastic container in the fridge while beer ferments. Then pour the contents through a muslin hop sack into secondary. Tie up the bag of chips,drop in & rack the beer onto them. Seal & let sit for a week. Then take a 1oz sample (shot glass). See if the flavor is where you want it. Age in bottles.
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Old 01-21-2012, 12:04 AM   #4
JDar1989
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Thanks, hope it turns out well.

 
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Old 01-21-2012, 12:30 AM   #5
unionrdr
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the mix of bourbon & chips I gave you should def allow the malts & hops come through more. Balance is still the key here. You want all the flavors to contribute,Like a chef does with food. And yes,being a good cook,foodie,etc def helps in brewing as well. Even my now brew mistress wife agrees whole hartedly to that.
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:00 AM   #6
mockery
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Do you add the bourbon to the secondary or just the soaked chips?

 
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Old 03-07-2012, 01:21 AM   #7
Teromous
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You can do both. A lot of people soak the chips in bourbon so that they don't have to bother with sanitizing the wood.

 
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Old 03-08-2012, 01:05 AM   #8
rgarry
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I find that American white oak is the best. Hickory is for smoking, not brewing IMHO

 
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