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Toasting oak chips at home and blending different levels of toast

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Kaz15

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I'm going to be brewing a 5 gallon batch of American Brown ale soon. My plan is to oak 2.5 gallons and leave the other 2.5 unoaked. I've used medium toast American oak cubes many times before, never chips. It always takes forever to get the oak character I'm looking for. Honestly, I always feel that I'm lacking enough oak flavor in my beer. I'd like to try chips this time to get the oak in faster. That said, it seems to be common knowledge that oak chips impart a one dimensional flavor. So...

...why not add oak chips with varying levels of toast in order to achieve more complex oak flavors in just one week? Has anyone else done this?

For 2.5 gallons I intend to add 1 oz TOTAL of American Oak. The oak would be dumped into primary after fermentation winds down and left in there for a week. Rack to keg around day 14-15. My thought is, what if I added .5 oz light toast, .5 oz medium toast. Or .33 light, .33 medium, .33 medium dark? See where I'm going with this? I love bourbon flavors, so perhaps I lean towards the darker end of the spectrum.

I recently bought some untoasted oak chips without really thinking about it. Felt dumb initially. Now I'm thinking this could be a great opportunity to try something not many people are doing. I've read some threads here and other articles on the internet about people who toast their own oak chips at home. Seems fairly straightforward.

Has anyone tried any of this? Any other thoughts?
 
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Kaz15

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they sell dust at the hardware store....throw it in the oven, when i do it for other things, i get a very uneven toast level......
Hahaha! That's funny. Well, I already have the chips; so no need for dust.

Looking for something a bit more controlled and repeatable. ;-)
 

bracconiere

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Hahaha! That's funny. Well, I already have the chips; so no need for dust.

Looking for something a bit more controlled and repeatable. ;-)

use a torch? i've done that over a steam bath before.....activated carbon! if you already have the light chips just give them a breif torch sesh to char the outside of them, then you'd have all the flavors you want.....
 
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