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Old 03-14-2008, 11:51 PM   #1
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Default Oak Barrel Aging - wine barrels?

Anyone have any opinions or impressions on the value of oak aging? What styles it works best with? How long to oak age and how to go about it?

And finally - anyone ever experiment with used wine barrels?

I work for a wine company and disposing of used barrels is almost a nuisance after the winemakers get their 3 years of use out of them, so I've pretty much got an unlimited supply of free (used) oak and I thought I might put it to use.

I'm kind of assuming the higher-gravity brews would work best and using the barrels as a long-term secondary or tertiary fermenter?


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Old 03-14-2008, 11:57 PM   #2
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Do you have any smaller barrels and can I have one?

I am not an expert on oak, but my favorite oaked styles have been porters and stouts. Firestone Walker ferments in oak, most people just age. The amount of beer you're brewing and the size of the barrel will all make differences in how it comes out, and the best method to figure out how oaked you want something seems to be just to taste it.

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Old 03-15-2008, 12:04 AM   #3
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I've got some Flanders Red in a Cabernet barrel in my basement right now.
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Old 03-15-2008, 12:05 AM   #4
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I'm a winemaker, too. I'll help you dispose of as many of those barrels as you need. They might not be optimum at three years old but they still have a lot of milage yet.
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