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Old 12-05-2013, 09:24 PM   #1
Kaz's Avatar
May 2010
Amish Country, PA
Posts: 1,064
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Hey hey...I have an Imperial Stout that came in around 10-11% ABV that has been sitting in the secondary for about 5 months now aging. I've recently thought about adding some oak to this brew, it tastes great now but might get some more depth from the oak. I've never added oak to anything before. Is it too late in the game to add the oak? What's the better oak product/toast to use and how long do you usually let it ride on the oak? TIA
Draft 1:
Draft 2:
Draft 3: Belgian Dubbel

Primary 1: German Hefe
Primary 2:

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Old 12-05-2013, 09:28 PM   #2
Jul 2010
Seattle, WA
Posts: 146
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Nice! I oaked my imperial stout. I can't recall exactly, but I ended up soaking about 40-50 medium toast oak cubes in about 300 ml of Woodinville Whiskey before pitching it into the secondary. I let it age out for several months with the cubes/whiskey in the secondary. I pitched this all into the fermenter after I reached FG. Give it a shot!

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Old 12-05-2013, 10:07 PM   #3
Aug 2012
Gravette, Arkansas
Posts: 1,170
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Originally Posted by Kaz View Post
Is it too late in the game to add the oak? What's the better oak product/toast to use and how long do you usually let it ride on the oak? TIA
No it isn't too late.
Next part of your question is subjective.(there's no `right` answer,only personal prefference)
Some use cubes,some use chips,some use spirals,some use old whisky barrels.
The spirals seem to work faster than the cubes from what i've read.
You will have to do some research/reading upon how quickly each type of oak adds flavor to the beer.If you `over-oak` it will take many months for the flavor to blend/mellow out.
Many people take small taste samples every few days to prevent over oaking & rack it off of the oak when it hits their desired flavor profile.
Hope this helps.

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Old 12-06-2013, 12:03 AM   #4
Feb 2011
Yorba Linda, CA
Posts: 916
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A good starting point for oak would be about 2oz of oak cubes or chips. I prefer cubes. They take a bit longer to extract the oak flavor, but I find the flavor to be a bit more complex than when I use chips. My personal favorite is American Oak cubes with a medium toast. With my barleywine I use 2oz and go about 3 months.

Most of what I read about oak is that chips work in days/weeks, while cubes and staves work in months.

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Old 12-06-2013, 04:55 AM   #5
Dec 2012
Posts: 285
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If you decide to go with chips, put them in a sanitized Knee-Hi with marbles to sink them to the bottom of your carboy. That way you don't get splinters floating around.

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