PDA

View Full Version : Kentucky Bourbon Ale - Barrel Sources



Bourbon Boiler
06-13-2011, 18:34
When touring distilleries last weekend, Heaven Hill, Makers Mark, Wild Turkey, and Woodford Reserve all claimed to be selling used barrels to age this beer. I can't imagine that the brewery needs a high quantity of barrels, and I would think they would want to reduce flavor variation among the different bourbons that have previously occupied those barrels.

The only thing I can assume is that they use multiple bourbon-barrels, and then mix for consistancy. Can anyone verify that this is the case? Does anyone know what other distilleries might be involved?

cigarnv
06-14-2011, 02:43
A single craft brewer in Baltimore is buying 300 barrels locally just to do one of their seasonal beer's this fall. This is up from less than 100 last year... bourbon barrel beer is a booming business.

Some brewers I am familiar with will blend beer from different barrels as well as from barrels which have been filled from 1 to 3 times. One very small brewer I am aware of only uses barrels from a specific rye whiskey and only uses them once.

pepcycle
06-14-2011, 08:54
They use Woodford Exclusively and they have a warehouse sized walk-in filled with hundreds of full ones. Production is up quite a bit and they only use the barrels "a few" times.
They use wine barrel pallet racks. They hold three barrels each and stack them up 20 ft high. They move them with fork lifts.

Bourbon Boiler
06-14-2011, 18:53
They use Woodford Exclusively and they have a warehouse sized walk-in filled with hundreds of full ones. Production is up quite a bit and they only use the barrels "a few" times.
They use wine barrel pallet racks. They hold three barrels each and stack them up 20 ft high. They move them with fork lifts.


Very interesting, thanks for the info. I wonder why the others were claiming the same thing? They probably sent them a few at one time, and figure it will happen again.

DeanSheen
06-14-2011, 19:32
BB - if your interested in such things there is this thread which is an attempt to track the provenance of bourbon barrels used in bourbon barrel aged beer.

http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?t=13191&highlight=bourbon+beer+barrel

Bourbon Boiler
06-14-2011, 20:11
Thanks Dean, appreciate the help.

DeanSheen
06-14-2011, 20:44
Thanks Dean, appreciate the help.

Sure, maybe log this one if it's not in there.

craigthom
06-15-2011, 18:01
Were they all making claims about Alltech's beer specifically? There are plenty of places putting beer in used cooperage. A brewery in Wisconsin told me they used Heaven Hill barrels when I asked. Because of course I asked.

Bourbon Boiler
06-15-2011, 18:12
Were they all making claims about Alltech's beer specifically? There are plenty of places putting beer in used cooperage. A brewery in Wisconsin told me they used Heaven Hill barrels when I asked. Because of course I asked.


Yes, they were, which is what I found so strange. I remember touring before and hearing the laundry list of all the places the used barrels go (scotch, irish, wine, beer, brandy, etc.) They all specificaly mentioned either "Alltech" or "Kentucky (Bourbon) Ale in Lexington".