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Ageing query

PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:08 pm
by Case
A couple weeks ago in another thread someone provided me with a picture that gave tempratures for toasting wood to release specific flavors. I didnt want to go back into that thread and derail it further and I cant seem to find an existing thread that deals with this. So yeah.

Do you have to toast the wood before its charred or can you toast already charred wood and expect the same result?

Re: Ageing query

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 11:59 am
by Zymurgy Bob
Case wrote:A couple weeks ago in another thread someone provided me with a picture that gave tempratures for toasting wood to release specific flavors. I didnt want to go back into that thread and derail it further and I cant seem to find an existing thread that deals with this. So yeah.

Do you have to toast the wood before its charred or can you toast already charred wood and expect the same result?

Some call all heat-treating of aging oak "charring", but to me there's an important distinction. When you char wood, you actually make it catch fire, and you develop the flavors at the far right of that graphic you mention, the acrid and almond flavors, which are specifically bourbon flavor notes. If you want your brandy or rum to taste like bourbon, char the wood.

On the other hand, if you're aging a brandy, rum, or malt whisky, heat treat to get the flavors you choose form that graphic. Oh, and with used bourbon barrel oak, all the flavor of the char is gone already.

Re: Ageing query

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 3:18 pm
by Case
Yeah. Once I upgrade to using barrels Ill be getting smaller new ones.

Reason Im asking is cause a lot of the aging cubes Im seeing forsale are already charred. The info from that thread made it seem like you cooked at a specific temp so it will produce a desired flavor and then charred it. So specific flavors come out of the wood faster than they would have if you hadnt cooked them.

About used barrels. Wouldnt it depend on how long thebwhiskey sat in it? From what I understand of traditional aging methods is what flavors come out of the wood depends on how long the whiskey sits in the cask. Some bourbons are aged as little as three months before theyre bottled and sold. If you were to get one of those barrels Wouldnt there be a lot of potential flavors left?

For the time being I will only be aging bourbon.

Re: Ageing query

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 5:13 pm
by punkin
Larry has toasted oak (i'm assuming you are in the United States as you haven't bothered filling out your profile to help us help you). I would recommend the traditional toast American oak for whiskeys and the French for rum and brandies.

http://stilldragon.com/index.php/oak-adjuncts.html

Re: Ageing query

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 5:18 pm
by Case
Yeah my bad. Ill get in there and do that before the work day starts.

But anyway. Am I correct in my earlier assumptions?

There. Profile filled out.

Re: Ageing query

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 6:10 pm
by Zymurgy Bob
I always assume that the used bourbon barrel oak I buy has been used for the 2-year aging requirement for a straight bourbon whiskey, and I therefore assume most of the charred flavor is already extracted. Lookinng at the edge of the stave, I can see how deeply into the wood the extraction process has gone, adm it usually appears to be 2-3mm, so the rest of the wood is relatively untouched.

For our Irish whiskey, I grind the crud off the staves (including the thin spent charred layer), cut and drill the staves as in the photo, and then I heat them at 420F for 2 hours, specifically avoiding the "Charred" flavor that develops at burning, ~450 F.

Image

Heating doesn't speed up flavor extraction; it changes the flavors you extract.

Re: Ageing query

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 6:13 pm
by Zymurgy Bob
Ooops! Sorry about that image size. FIXED

Re: Ageing query

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 7:55 pm
by Case
Ok thanks. Like I said I'm fairly new to aging my own stuff. But from what Ive learned in my years sampling various bourbons is that notes like leather vanilla and almond come out of the wood later in the aging process than smoke and what not. Like 5 years or more. Thats why brands that are aged ten years or more are so rich in flavors. So I figured that getting lesser aged used barrels might give those flavors faster. But because there is a legal definition for bourbon, actual distillers cant do this and market their product as a straight bourbon. Ive read that some of the blended bourbons use these older barrels to get the more aged flavors. But have to call it a blended bourbon because they arent using new casks.

Anyway i noticed when sampling Pappys 15 year old and then the family reserve that the flavors were very different even though from what I hear the grain bills are identical as are the casks.

Please if Im wrong in any of this, correct me.

Ao I figured thst cooking the wood kind of sped up the process by focusing on a specific flavor.

Anyway here is a pretty good read.
http://www.gobourbon.com/bourbon-barrels-climate/

Edit to add. Meant to say whiskeys not bourbons when talking about some using used casks. Little preoccupied. Shoulder deep in a body maker tonight. Frigging maintenance week.