About a month ago I bottled a barleywine that I'd aged in a small 5 gallon bourbon barrel. Decided to crack one open the other day to see how it was coming along only to notice that there was very little carbonation - the beer smelled and tasted great, but it was almost totally flat. I guess it might be possible that's its just moving along slowly and could yet gain a bit more carbonation, but after speaking with some friends I'm thinking I might have needed to add more yeast in at bottling time in order for it to carbonate - it was suggested that most of the yeast likely died off/settled into the wood so when I transferred from barrel to the bottling bucket, virtually no viable yeast was brought over to bottle condition the beer with.
I don't yet have any kegging equipment (but I am looking) so what might I be able to do in the meantime to alleviate this issue on future barrel aged batches?
I'm wondering if it might work to sort of rouse what's in the barrel a bit before transferring into the bottling bucket... would that do the trick? Would I be better served just adding fresh yeast into the beer at bottling time, or maybe using a krausening method like the one mentioned here: http://www.winning-homebrew.com/krausening.html
thanks in advance for any input you might be able to provide...