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dougdog
11-20-2005, 15:36
This post is to facilitate an exchange of knowledge and theory. It is an experiment from which to learn. I'm starting off simple at first for gathering a "baseline" of information to launch other variations in future projects.

My beginning goal, stated simply, is to "condition" the barrel(s) to allow for an introduction of selected, premium, younger whiskies to mature for lengthy periods of time...hopefully, making them better and/or more interesting. After the barrels are "done" aging Bourbon, possibly 10-20 years from now, I intend to further age SMSW. (Single Malt Scotch whisky) Using what I have learned here to hopefully make that successful too.

Thanks to all who have posted information in various places here on this site that has led up to this current place in time.

The barrels, 3 gallon and 5 gallons, were brought over to the "Study Group" last evening by Roger. (11-19-05)(Thanks Roger!) Both barrels are heavy char #3. (One can hear the bits of charcoal that are loose inside when the barrels are rolled or shaken.)

I intend to fill the first barrel today. I'm going to start with the small one. I'm using Ancient Age for two main reasons. First, it is relatively inexpensive. (14.99 per 1.75 liters) Second, I believe that this particular whiskey will do rather well with additional ageing.

After evaluating the time frames and tasting results when this AA is finally removed, the barrel will be filled again for round two. More will be known about what kind of whiskies will be chosen for the second fill after evaluating the results of taste and time from the first fill. There could be a third and final fill for the long haul, but that won't be considered to heavily at this point in time until more is known.

The "conditioning" mentioned above, is to now use inexpensive bourbon to prepare the barrel for more select bourbon, long term aging. After the "final" bourbon is matured, 10-20 years from now, additional conditioning could be done to prepare the cask for SMSW. The types of consideration for influencing the barrel might come from rums, wines, ports, Sherries or other similar products...time will tell.

Please post your comments or suggestions...I'd like to know what you think!

Best regards, dougdog

dougdog
11-20-2005, 16:11
The barrel is full,it consumed the better part of (6) 1.75 liter plastic bottles. When replacing the bung, I could see the charcoal floating in the whiskey.... http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif

I'll keep in touch...best regards, dougdog

RedVette
11-20-2005, 17:02
The reason genetecists use fruitflies to test theories is because their life cycle is measured in days. Your experiment is measured in years. I think your grandkids will really enjoy what you learned.

The AA is a good call, as opposed to Old Crow or Kessler etc.

The East Bay is a rather temperate sort of place (I grew up down the street), do you think you have enough winter or enough summer to move the Bourbon through the char? I'm thinking that you just might end up with "smoked" AA.

Did I mention that I think this is really cool?

kbuzbee
11-20-2005, 17:10
Doug, that is awsomely cool. You're a good month ahead of me http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif I like the idea of using a conditioning run first. I'm betting even the 2nd and third fillings will be quicker than you think based on the size of the barrel. Maybe 10 months and 2 years?? Are you doing regular sampling to track it's progress?? How frequently??

Doug! Doug! Doug! Doug! Doug! Doug! Doug! Doug! Doug! Doug!

Ken

TNbourbon
11-20-2005, 17:51
...I'm thinking that you just might end up with "smoked" AA...



AAa? http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/skep.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

barturtle
11-20-2005, 18:08
Cool! can't wait to see how this works out!

Looks like you saved a sample to try it against, good.

Have you considered how you're going to filter it when you dump it? or if you will?

Have you considered how often you'll weigh the barrel to see how long it takes before you get losses other than what the barrel absorbs?

Looks good, where is it going to be stored again? Can we get some pics of its new home?

Though this might seem to be a odd thought, it might be interesting to get one of the digital weather stations that will give a daily average temp and keep track of it. It might be going overboard, but then again some would say that rebarreling your own whiskey is as well http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

JeffRenner
11-20-2005, 18:18
The barrel is full,it consumed the better part of (6) 1.75 liter plastic bottles.



No leaks, then? When I filled an oak barrel with five gallons of (hard) cider many (25?) years ago, I had to soak it first in water to swell the staves. It leaked like a sieve for several days.

Of course, we never hear of this problem with whiskey barrels, so maybe they (and yours) haven't had time to dry out, as mine evidently had.

In no time at all, I had cider that was overwhelmingly oaky. Served it all up at a party. I rinsed it out well and still have it. I doubt that I could get it sweet enough to put anything in it that would be consumed, but who knows?

Jeff

dougdog
11-20-2005, 22:06
Rob,

Having grown up in San Jose and spent most of my life in the Bay Area I find my East Bay location quite different weather wise compared to that of the South Bay/San Jose. Some of my observations seem, at times, quite counterintuitive. I've lived in my current home for 6 plus years now and paying close attention to the weather due to my interest in Bonsai (See dugzbonsai.com) it is easy for me to believe that there is sufficient temperature swing to do the job. Compound that with the extra "gain" in the attic and I think my barrel(s) will do just fine.

The record low in my back yard was three years ago at 21 degrees F. The record high has been 104. It is not unusual for the cold snaps to be 5-10 days long and the heat waves to be two to three weeks. Generally speaking, at summer time, it is usually warmer in San Jose than here and usually colder here than San Jose at the same time in winter.

One would think that the close proximity to the San Francisco Bay would moderate those temperatures more, but it just doesn't seem to work that way when I look at the thermometer.

I am going to get a thermometer that has the tell-tales for my attic so I can monitor the temperature swings and compare with those outside.

I wonder what the annual range is inside the warehouses in Kentucky?

dougdog
11-20-2005, 22:21
Ken,

You wrote:



Are you doing regular sampling to track its progress?? How frequently??




My thought right now is to draw 50mls at one week intervals for the first 8 weeks and evaluate them at the one month intervals...oddly enough this will happen at the third Saturday "Study Groups"...what a coincidence!

I intend to measure and record the amount lost to evaporation and barrel absorption and replace with new AA after the weekly/monthly sample has been drawn...oh yea... and replace what we, the "study groupers", sample as well!

If you would like, I'd be glad to post the findings here.

Best regards, dougdog!

dougdog
11-20-2005, 22:37
Jeff,

No leaks in this barrel. Thank goodness!

I did overfill it slightly and the picture shows some moisture in the cracks and around the metal bands.

I did go around the barrel with a hammer and a big cold chisel to tighten up a few of the intermediated bands, which had come loose in transportation. (One had slipped off when handling it this morning prior to filling.)

A question back at you...Why would previously barreling cider prohibit you from re-barreling whiskey?

Best regards, dougdog http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

JeffRenner
11-21-2005, 08:30
Why would previously barreling cider prohibit you from re-barreling whiskey?



Sorry for not having been clear - it's nothing in the cider itself, but rather that the barrel has sat empty and dry all these years. Wine makers store empty barrels with sulfited water in them to keep the staves swollen and to discourage microbial growth. And they traditionally "sweeten" them before refilling by burning a sulfur candle in them, filling them with SO2 fumes.

So I suspect that my barrel may be musty. Obviously nothing would grow in it if the alcohol level is sufficiently high, but it might taint the contents.

I have been considering, however, checking it out and if it's clean, filling it with fresh make white dog from a 50% rye malt, 30% unmalted rye, and 20% distillers barley malt. I believe I might find connections for such a spirit. (I discovered in a test mash that Briess Malting Co.'s rye malt (http://www.briess.com/brew/products.shtml#rye), unlike barley malt, lacks sufficient enzymes to convert even its own starch, so additional enzymes must be added from barley malt. Apparently, Anchor Distilling gets a higher enzyme rye malt.)

Jeff

JeffRenner
11-21-2005, 08:54
I intend to measure and record the amount lost to evaporation and barrel absorption and replace with new AA after the weekly/monthly sample has been drawn...oh yea... and replace what we, the "study groupers", sample as well!



This sounds like a great project!

Some further thoughts on this. One of my ongoing homebrew projects has been an Old Ale "Solera." This is a five gallon stainless steel Pepsi keg in which I have kept a strong, "Old Ale" (that's a style of strong ale) since 1994. Every couple of years, I top it up. After about three years, it serendiptously turned nicely tart (see my full explanation in my post (http://www.straightbourbon.comhttp://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthreaded.php/Cat/0/Number/50381/page/vc/vc/1) on Flanders ales earlier).

Some homebrewers in Franklin, TN, were inspired (http://hbd.org/hbd/archive/4565.html#4565-2) by this to step it up in scale by brewing 11 five-gallon batches of barleywine and storing it in a used bourbon barrel. Their intent is to draw it down as needed and top it up occasionally. However, they hadn't counted on the staves on the top of the barrel drying out, and it leaked when they refilled it (see their report (http://hbd.org/hbd/archive/4803.html#4803-8) to Homebrw Digest).

If you keep your barrel full, this shouldn't be a problem, but we do hear of whiskey being rebarrelled. I wonder if this is a problem with them. And I wonder why it doesn't seem to be a problem when bourbon barrels are refilled with beer at microbreweries (as is increasingly being done with stouts and barleywine). Obviously, the top staves in a well aged barrel of bourbon will be dry. (The Tennessee homebrewers kept their barrel wrapped in wet blankets until they filled it).

Jeff

dougdog
11-21-2005, 09:51
Jeff, you have posted some valuable information, Thanks!

In other threads, I had mentioned the idea of a "solera" or "living barrel" idea. (Loch-Fyne Whiskies in Scotland has a in-house cask program, pseudo-solera thing going on)

I think this method would have its advantages when using small barrels in a project like this. First the "re-topping" would keep the barrel from leaking and also allow for influencing the contents for corrective measures or directive measures. One aspect being a defensive tool, the latter being more offensive in nature. Directive additions would be done to influence the contents to specific preferences of taste. IE, more rye flavor, wheat flavor, sweeter, dryer, higher proof, lower proof etc...What ever the mood.

Most of this is just thought process for the future; at this point in time the only work is to break-in this little barrel and build the "baseline" of information for future expansion of ideas.
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

brian12069
11-21-2005, 17:49
I want to get a barrel now! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/drink.gif

Ken Weber
11-22-2005, 06:57
Doug,
I have been reading this thread with some amusement. What would happen if you had access to aging whiskey still in the barrel (like in an aging warehouse) and emptied it after about 4 - 5 years and then put the un-processed bourbon into a new charred barrel and let it age another 4 - 5 years? First of all the bourbon will not be 8 - 10 years old, but rather 4 - 5 years old. However, it will be very "rich."

Do you recall me talking about having 1500 experimental barrels in our warehouse? Well........

Ken

barturtle
11-22-2005, 07:20
What would happen if you had access to aging whiskey still in the barrel (like in an aging warehouse)



Hey! No fair! Cheater! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif



Do you recall me talking about having 1500 experimental barrels in our warehouse? Well........



Will work for experimental whiskey http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

JeffRenner
11-22-2005, 07:24
What would happen if you had access to aging whiskey still in the barrel (like in an aging warehouse) and emptied it after about 4 - 5 years and then put the un-processed bourbon into a new charred barrel and let it age another 4 - 5 years? First of all the bourbon will not be 8 - 10 years old, but rather 4 - 5 years old. However, it will be very "rich."

Do you recall me talking about having 1500 experimental barrels in our warehouse? Well........



What a tease!

So you are saying that the bourbon, even though it had been in two barrels for a total of 8 - 10 years, would be considered only as old as the time it spent in its more recent barrelling? That seems very strange.

I certainly can see that it would have double the barrel flavors, or, as you say, be very rich. As one who at least thinks that he appreciates the flavor of the distillate as well as barrel flavors, I'm not sure how I'd feel about this. It seems that the flavor of the distillate itself would be overwhelmed.

I hope I get to find out. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif

Jeff

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-22-2005, 07:25
Hi Ken,
I have been wondering why none of the distilleries have tried rebarreling bourbon in a second new charred oak barrel, now I think at least one of them has! I look forward to this being released and/or sampling a barrel if/when I get to Kentucky. (That is a hint...) (I plan on bringing a 1.75 liter "flask"...)

Did I understand correctly that once a bourbon leaves its original barrel it can't legally get any older?
Ed

barturtle
11-22-2005, 07:26
So you are saying that the bourbon, even though it had been in two barrels for a total of 8 - 10 years, would be considered only as old as the time it spent in its more recent barrelling? That seems very strange



I think he's actually saying that it would be considered as old as its original or first barreling age.

JeffRenner
11-22-2005, 07:41
I think he's actually saying that it would be considered as old as its original or first barreling age.



I suspect you are right. But it still seems strange. What if it spent four years in the first barrel and six years in its second barrel. Why couldn't you call it six year old whiskey? Or even more sensibly, ten year old? You have a spirit, properly mashed and distilled, stored in new, charred oak barrels and aged for six years. I don't see anything in the regs (http://www.atf.treas.gov/regulations/27cfr5.html) that says it has to be white dog that is placed into the barrels. Seems common sense.

I suppose BT has lawyers on this, or perhaps there is a precedent, but I think it could/should be as old as the total time it spent in new, charred oak barrels, even if this is more than one barrel.

This legal opinion is offered for the same fee as your



Will work for experimental whiskey



Jeff

dougdog
11-22-2005, 07:42
Hey Ken, I do recall all the conversation we had in the rick-house that day...

Especially the parts about experimental barrels and discussion about Cream of Kentucky...somehow, your post here doesn't surprise me...rather it lends confirmation that I'm heading in the right direction....and I'm with Ed...only difference is that I'm gonna ask Randy to loan me his new found 5 gallon "flask" for my little sample bottle....LOL http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smilielol.gif

Can you give a hint as to when the experiment re-barreling in your wharehouse will be ready for market?

Ken...you da man...BT is da place!!!

See ya at the sampler...best regards, dougdog

dougdog
11-22-2005, 08:57
Hi Timothy

You wrote:



Have you considered how you're going to filter it when you dump it? or if you will?

Have you considered how often you'll weigh the barrel to see how long it takes before you get losses other than what the barrel absorbs?

Looks good, where is it going to be stored again? Can we get some pics of its new home?



I'm considering two ideas at this point in time, first is to just run it through a coffee filter to remove all the big chunks.
Second is to take some of the Mesquite charcoal that I use in my BBQ, crush it, and run some of the bourbon through it as in "Charcoal Filtered"

I'll save the "used" charcoal for the next time I grill a BBQ pork tenderloin roast... (Jeff, thanks again for that good recipe)

The barrel will be checked weekly for the first 8 weeks, evaluated and probably be checked monthly after stabilization has been established. Samples being consumed...I mean "TESTED" at each "Study Group"!

It will be stored in my attic where more drastic temperature swing are prevalent...I'll take pictures and post them when the barrel is placed. Right now I'm trying to get some time to stop at the store and get a thermometer with tell-tales to mount next to the barrel. Right now the barrel is sitting in the bonsai studio at the same place where the photo was taken. It gets some late afternoon sun there at this time of year. I'm planning to place it in the attic on Saturday the 26th.

Your thought about my thoughts?

Best, dougdog

Gillman
11-22-2005, 09:09
Why doesn't the bourbon age for the total number of years in your example? I see what you mean in the legal sense but not in the practical sense, i.e., for the purpose of Doug's experiments. The only real difference from regular aging is he transferred the AA into a new barrel, which means more wood gums will get in (the richness you refer to) than if the AA had continued to be held in the original barrels. That is why, plus the factor of the small barrel size, that people are advising and Doug has accepted that his AA will reach optimum condition (likely) in months not years but apart from that I don't see why one wouldn't count the age of his bourbon when it went into his barrels when (at the end) computing the final age.

Gary

Gillman
11-22-2005, 09:25
Doug I know the samples you will remove are small but I advise if possible to hold back some from each successive tasting so later you see whether there is any change between the samples. Only a side-by-side will really tell you I think..

Also, just a suggestion, but you may want to consider not doing the top-up. To me that crosses over into another area, the "solera" idea which is a good one but will change the idea of the continued aging of the AA you first put in there. Solera whiskey can be good (e.g. you probably know the Glenfidich version) but this is a different animal from making AA into AAA.

The only difference between your project and continued aging in the BT warehouses is your entry proof was lower and you used a new barrel. I don't think either factor really matters if you check as we are discussing the quality and choose to dump at the time you feel it is right - this will probably (but who knows) be a question of months not years.

After you dump you will have seasoned barrels and if you continue the project you will (except again for proof) come even closer to the continued aging model of the warehouse.

Gary

barturtle
11-22-2005, 09:29
Coffee filter is my first thought as well, though I might invest in a reusable metal one instead of using a paper type. I did have the thought of using a Brita-type water filter as they use activated charcoal as the filering media, you could even chill filter in one of these little pitchers.

I wonder if the mesquite charcoal would impart a mesquite flavor. I wonder if JD sells its used maple charcoal, I know I've seen barrel char for sale at BT's giftshop, seems JD would do something similar at its giftshop.

Sounds like a good plan. I look forward to seeing a barrel sample at the next Gazebo. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif

Rughi
11-22-2005, 10:11
Doug,
Don't go gettin' all Texas on us with that Mesquite stuff. You gonna make "Doug Dogie's Western Roundup Red Likker" or "God's Honest Bay Area Kentucky Bourbon", in the good old Lawrenceburg-Fresno tradition?

Roger "Don't Mess with Texas" Hodges

barturtle
11-22-2005, 10:28
Actually I was considering that a possible thing to watch out for(i.e. an unwanted flavor)- The used up JD charcoal would not have much wood flavor left over while still working well as a filtering agent.

I believe that a good Kenifornia Bourbon in the Frankno tradition is the goal http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

barturtle
11-22-2005, 10:46
Going back to the point of refilling it to keep it from drying out and leaking. I'm not sure about how you actually feel about the semi-solera system that this sets up, but if you're not entirely happy with that and would like to just let that batch mature on its own without any outside interference, you might want to ask Ken Weber what it is the leak chasers use to seal up leaks on their barrels(in case any develop). Though this might be more practicable on the bigger barrel when you get to it, as the samples taken out will reduce the volume by a smaller pecentage each time, allowing for longer aging(and more samples)before it is empty.

Not that I think the solera system is bad, it could work quite well. Just trying to give any other options that are available.

doubleblank
11-22-2005, 11:26
Hey Doug.......Have you ever tried Prichard's Double Barreled Bourbon? I don't know if its available anymore, but my recollection is that the Prichard Distillery bought barrels of bourbon, cut it down in proof, and then rebarreled it into "small", new charred barrels. I have a bottle but haven't opened it. They use 15 gallon oak barrels for ageing their rum......my guess is they used the same size for their bourbon. There never was much discussion about it on this site.....just a couple of threads and minimal comments regarding taste. The bottle says 9yo, but I don't recall any distiction between age in the first barrel and age from the second barrel. Again, my guess is that it didn't stay in the new barrels very long......they needed cash flow.....and it also makes sense as discussed herein.

Randy

kbuzbee
11-22-2005, 11:41
Doug I think the gold coffee filter idea will work just fine. You would get (maybe) a better filteration putting some of the char into the gold filter but (I suspect) char falling out of the barrle will accomplish this in short order.

Ken

Gillman
11-22-2005, 12:07
Just roll the barrel around (or shake it) a bit once in a while, that should take care of any drying out issue. Distillers sometimes still roll barrels around in warehouses, to rotate, and for those who don't (most), the leaking problem seems controllable - otherwise they wouldn't have given up rotating the barrels.:)

Gary

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-22-2005, 12:16
One thought on the coffee filter. If I were you I would wash it out with vodka first, to get out any flavors that alcohol might leach out of it before you run any of your precious bourbon through it. Dito for any charcoal you might use.
Ed

dougdog
11-22-2005, 12:43
Ok...

I'm planning on using a paper coffee filter...not gold, the holes are too big.

I'm thinking that the mesquite charcoal would be used to influence/mello the flavor, not act as a "filter", just filter/trickle the whiskey through it. yea, JD does it in maple wood charcoal...mine would have a different slant...if it came out close to anything like McKendrick's I'll quickley give that idea up for good.

As for topping off after taking samples...even after 8 50ml reductions, I've compromised less than 2% of the intergity of the experiment.

More later...

Keep the input coming!

Thanks Roger! LOL

dougdog

TNbourbon
11-22-2005, 15:36
Hey Doug.......Have you ever tried Prichard's Double Barreled Bourbon? I don't know if its available anymore, but my recollection is that the Prichard Distillery bought barrels of bourbon, cut it down in proof, and then rebarreled it into "small", new charred barrels. I have a bottle but haven't opened it. They use 15 gallon oak barrels for ageing their rum...my guess is they used the same size for their bourbon...Randy



You are correct about the process, Randy. And make that two unopened bottles to compare with Ken's when he brings his to the Gazebo http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif.
I believe the erstwhile Jacob's Well "micro-distilled" Beam bottling also was rebarreled.

TNbourbon
11-22-2005, 15:41
...I'm considering two ideas at this point in time, first is to just run it through a coffee filter to remove all the big chunks. Second is to take some of the Mesquite charcoal that I use in my BBQ, crush it, and run some of the bourbon through it as in "Charcoal Filtered"...



Doug, go out and get some McKendric Western Style Whiskey, try it, and then forget that mesquite idea. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/deadhorse.gif

dougdog
11-22-2005, 16:48
Here are the items that I have so far to help me manage my little barrels.

Hydrometer

Pipette with bulb for extraction.

Two part funnel

Coffee filters (paper)

dougdog
11-22-2005, 16:49
!

dougdog
11-22-2005, 16:50
!

dougdog
11-22-2005, 16:51
With this arrangement, I am able to put charcoal in the top and still keep the big chunks out of the bottle

JeffRenner
11-22-2005, 17:13
Hydrometer



Doug

You might want to consider getting a refractometer to test for alcohol level. This requires only a drop or two.

You can get them on eBay, although most of them have a scale for sugar (Brix) or salinity. But occasionally, one that measures alcohol shows up, and I suspect that the regular sellers kept them in stock. You'd have to ask. Should be able to get one with automatic temperature control for around $50, I'd think.

Or, if you found one that reads out Refractive Index (RI), you can easily convert that to per cent alcohol. I have a chart for that somewhere, and they are easily available. The chart, that is.

I love my refractometer for brewing and will never go back to a hydrometer.

Jeff

Here is a typical one, not necessarily the kind you want:

RedVette
11-22-2005, 17:42
"Doug Dogie's Western Roundup Red Likker"



http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif

dougdog
11-25-2005, 10:58
First and foremost, I’d NEVER chill-filter a whiskey-whisky...NEVER!

(That's why William Larue Weller Is SO appealing to me)...can't wait to taste some!

Second and of more importance, I'd never, NEVER, chill-filter a whiskey-whisky...I hope I'm clear on this.

As for the re-ageing, I figure the "double wood" influence is what I'm aiming for...I'm looking for the fuller, richer, bigger mouth-feel type experience. I'm hoping that the barrel proof will increase in time. (Part of the "Base-line" in this project is to see what will happen to proof. If proof doesn't rise significantly, I'll go to work on ideas for increasing proof. Those might include starting with something like Wild turkey 101 or a WL Weller 100 proof from Buffalo Trace for the 5 gallon barrel)

I'm always interested in the tasting notes of others who mention the bigger wood influences or in some cases the "over-wooded" tasting note in the whiskey they are commenting on. I seek these out to experience the most flavors the barrel has to offer...I've not found an over wooded whiskey yet...I guess I like those barrel notes!

Given that the barrel will be checked regularly, should it become over wooded I believe that the whisky could still be used for not only cooking, but to mix with other whiskies to "Gillmanize" them. So, with this in mind, I really don't see a down side.

Ken at BT has really got me thinking about his "double barrel" experiment he's got going on since posting the information he gave above. Particularly his emphasis on the word "Rich"....Hmmmmm....what could that mean? I think I'll PM a note to Ken and try out a couple of ideas that come to mind...I digress.

The new-filled barrel is prone to some recent leaking at the bung. This is noted happening when the afternoon sun hits the barrel around 3-5 pm in the afternoon/evening. I suppose the wood is expanding/swelling from the first full fill along with the expansion of the contents from warming.

The thermometer has had a 33 degree hi-lo temperature swing noted in the last 4 days. I will draw the first sample and re-set the thermometer tell-tales tomorrow (Saturday, 11-26-5) and post results.

Until then...keep the thoughts and comments coming.

Best regards, dougdog

dougdog
11-26-2005, 14:06
Randy...

I have not tasted Prichard's, don't even know what the bottle/label looks like.

Didn't even know about it...I don't get out much!

It sounds interesting...one question....was this product widely available in it's day? and if so, do you know what areas of distribution, particularly if it ever was seen in California? (Ok, so that might be three questions)

Would you mind posting a picture of your bottle?

Thanks!

dougdog

doubleblank
11-26-2005, 16:35
Hey Doug.......I don't think it was widely distributed...I got mine in KY. I'll post a few pics on Monday.

Randy

robbyvirus
11-26-2005, 17:29
Randy...

I have not tasted Prichard's, don't even know what the bottle/label looks like.

Didn't even know about it...I don't get out much!

dougdog



Doug, I think the stress of bourbon hunting is finally catching up to you. I brought some Pritchard's Double-Barreled Bourbon to the SB gathering at Jim Butler's house this summer, and you, me, and Roger gave it a try. As I recall, you liked it quite a bit.

The bottle I had came from a liquor store in Nashville, Tennessee a couple of years ago. I've only seen it in that one store...never in California, or anywhere else for that matter.

barturtle
11-26-2005, 17:36
Here's a pic and label text from that "other" bourbon site.

http://bourbonenthusiast.com/forum/DBvd.php?id=249&task=displaybottling

dougdog
11-27-2005, 11:02
Robby,

You wrote:



Doug, I think the stress of bourbon hunting is finally catching up to you.



And you are probably spot on...

That "stress", together with CRS has caused the Prichard's to fall off my whiskey radar screen...

BTW...CRS is an ailment that I suffer from in my old age, translated it is the shortened, PC version of "Can't Remember Shit"

I'm sorry for not remembering!



I brought some Pritchard's Double-Barreled Bourbon to the SB gathering at Jim Butler's house this summer



Jim who?...........................

Robby, that would be a good bottle to bring over to study group some time to re-investigate and become familiar with again...certainly, the "double barrel" aspect would be interesting for comparative purposes with my re-barrel project. Someone else mentioned Jacobs Well as double barrel bourbon, and I have a bottle that we can open for part of that study.

Just kiddin' Boss!...(Really, I do remember Jim, wasn't he the guy runnin' around at a hundred miles and hour, fixin' REAL tasty treats on the BBQ with cooking tongs in one hand and a cordless drill in the other?)

I hadn't forgotten the great hospitality and great food we had that day! I think Jim just needed a third hand to allow the bourbon glass to be held in closer proximity at all times.

OneCubeOnly
11-27-2005, 12:39
I believe the erstwhile Jacob's Well "micro-distilled" Beam bottling also was rebarreled.



Wasn't there something weird about the rebarrelling of Jacob's Well? I vaguely remember some discussion about it, and IIRC the conclusion was they really didn't do a straight rebarrel, it was more like they topped off existing ones...something unusual like that!?
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif

bobbyc
11-27-2005, 13:20
they really didn't do a straight rebarrel, it was more like they topped off existing ones...something unusual like that!?



That is something that is being done a lot more than you'll hear about.

dougdog
11-27-2005, 17:42
Last evening, (11-26-5) I had guests (Tim TMH and wife Aya) over for dinner and to sample some whiskey-whisky. After dinner we sampled many types of bourbon and finally got around to opening the little barrel. We took out 20 ml’s for each glass and filled a 50 ml bottle for the archive. Then, from the original 1.75 liter plastic bottle we poured a small amount into a glass for comparison and filled a 50ml bottle to archive as well. The balance of the plastic bottle was used to top off the barrel.

We compared the color of the two bottles…it seemed that there was no noticeable change…

Then we went to the glasses and that is where the change was easy to detect…Just nosing it, you could already tell that the whiskey was softer, rounder, sweeter and mellower. When tasting it, my palate was rewarded with fuller, richer flavors. Tim agreed. I could still tell we were drinking Ancient Age and thought the differences were not overwhelming; it was clearly evident the barrel had been workin’ on the whiskey. Satisfied that there were some good changes in just one week’s time, we’ll look forward to checking this again in the future.

It is time to put the barrel up in the attic and get it into the cycle of larger temperature swings; I’ll post pictures when it is settled in.

The temperature this week in the bonsai studio has ranged from 71 degrees for the high and 38 degrees for the low...about a 33 degree swing. We’ll see what the attic does.

Rughi
11-27-2005, 20:30
Doug,
Yayyy!

Did the color change noticeably? If, for instance, you were going from white dog then the color might change dramatically in just a few days, but starting from red liquor as you are my guess would be that the aroma, mouthfeel, and flavor will change much more than the color.

I'd sample often, for fun and science. There's no downside in tasting. Keep us posted. I believe weekly updates are in order for about the first 3 weeks. Let me know if there's any way that I can help in your documentation of this experiment http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Roger

PS I admit that I forgot all about the Pritchard's at Jim's until Rob reminded us. I think your CRS might be contagious. Could it be caused by Scotch? It can't be Bourbon, because Bourbon has all natural ingredients...

robbyvirus
11-28-2005, 00:00
Robby, that would be a good bottle to bring over to study group some time to re-investigate and become familiar with again...certainly, the "double barrel" aspect would be interesting for comparative purposes with my re-barrel project.



Unfortunately my bottle of Pritchard's was recently "studied" to completion. Hopefully I'll run across another bottle somewhere, sometime, but given the fact that I've only seen it once, I'm not counting on it.

kbuzbee
11-28-2005, 07:35
Jeff, most of the refractometers I'm finding are either 0-25% or 0-40%. Do you have a specific recommendation for one we could use to track a barrel that may wind up 60% or 70%??

Ken

dougdog
11-29-2005, 16:19
The previous owner of this home installed a pull down ladder to the attic in the hallway...

dougdog
11-29-2005, 16:21
Looking up into the attic from the floor below...you can get a glimpse of the little barrel...

dougdog
11-29-2005, 16:24
In its new home you can see the tel-tale thermometer leaning against the littel barrel, I can take the temperature readings easily... sorry,the flash washed it out a bit.

RedVette
11-29-2005, 16:37
Are you going to put the Chiropractors bill in the total expense column when figuring out your cost per liter?

dougdog
12-04-2005, 11:10
I'm late at getting into the little barrel for this weeks sample taste and archive bottle.

I have noted a larger temperature swing of 45 degrees in the attic this week. (Last week was a 33 degree swing while the barrel was in the studio) The weather this week was generally cooler than last week...so the attic seems to be the best place for wider temperature swings.

It is too early to in the day to start tasting but I'll try to have completed noted posted by the time we chat this evening.

One notable...There seems to be some wetness around the bung at the warmer times of the day. (The fill level is no longer right at the top) Even when I checked this week, the liquid level at the warmest time of the day is still 1/2 inch down from the bung being in direct contact with the whiskey. I believe that there is some capillary action going on here. (The first week I put in a piece of plastic between the bung and the barrel to stop the wetness and noted that didn't work. I chalked that up to the barrel being too full, maybe some internal pressure from expansion of contents and stave swelling.)

Is this something that could/should be corrected, or should it be left alone?

If it should be corrected, what would be your suggestions?

(Sure makes the attic smell good!)

At this point in time I do not intend to top off the barrel after today's samples are removed. (This may or may not help the wetness problem)

Your thoughts please...

Best regards, dougdog

BSS
12-04-2005, 11:31
I thought barrels and the liquid inside of them needed extended periods of cold and hot to really "age". As in the seasons, in Kentucky you have 4 or 5 months of cold, then 5 or 6 months of warm. I don't think the bourbon has time to soak into and out of the wood in short periods of temp changes. To me, any change in taste is simply the result of the bourbon coming into contact with the inside surface of the barrel, and does not really have anything to do with the temperature changes.
Am I correct on that, anyone?

barturtle
12-04-2005, 11:33
Hmm, kinda does sound like a pressure/capillary action thing. I'm guessing that the pressure increase is forcing the capillary action through the weakest point(ie. the hole cut through the grain of the wood). Seems to me that as the level is lowered in the barrel the pressure increase will be less due to the increased airspace in the barrel and the leaking would be less. I know some homebrewers who didn't leave enough airspace in their bottles with explosive results.

Gillman
12-04-2005, 16:10
Doug, I believe stopping the topping up may help. If that doesn't work, if there is any way to reduce the temperature swings, that will do it. By not topping up, I believe too you will approximate more closely to commercial warehouse storage and results.

Gary

dougdog
12-04-2005, 16:40
Thanks Gary,

I'll going to go with not filing it back up as the current option.

The temperature swings are what I am seeking, I believe that they contribute to working the whiskey in and out of the wood during the expansion and contraction cycles.

gr8erdane
12-05-2005, 00:26
I'm wondering if the rapid swings in such short time periods are actually allowing the effects you are looking for. It seems to me that penetration of the carmelized layers under the char would require a constancy of high temperatures over a period of time to maximize the depth of penetration. By going up and down so frequently, it might just be entering the char and then drawing back out before it gets the full benefit of the inner layers. You might just be penetrating into the char alone and end up with char flavored AA. Of course this is just a thought.

I'm also of a mind that with frequent openings and closings, you're not allowing the bung to seal properly which would allow any lower air pressure changes outside to draw the higher air pressure inside to push some of the vapor out through the bung in an effort to equalize. Again, just a random thought through my warped little noggin.

barturtle
12-05-2005, 06:27
I'm thinking that even the large commercial barrels undergo daily swings, though they are probably smaller due to the larger volume of the barrels and the fact that there are many of them all acting to some extent as one large thermal mass. However the barrels near windows, along walls, and close to the roof should still have a higher daily temperature swing. And of course these temperature swings will be at higher average temps in the summer and lower average temps in the winter(assuming Dougdogs attic is insulated from the rest of the house and not from the outside-which it seems to be based on the temp swing he's getting)

kbuzbee
12-05-2005, 07:42
Dane and BSS, this is one of the great unknowns (at least for me http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif). Whether short term or long term or both are required. I'd expect both but I would think the red zone could be reached even during a single days swing.

Hopefully the various projects being undertaken will help us understand this better.

Ken

dougdog
12-16-2005, 21:48
Well, I'm a bit late in getting this information posted. I took the usual 50ml sample last Sunday afternoon, Dec 11th, (a day late) and temperature readings for the week. High was 78, low was 30, making it a 48 degree swing. This week the temps were similar, 76 for the highest and 30 for the lowest, the swing being 46 degrees.

I sampled the contents as well and I am glad to report that it seems to be getting smoother and sweeter and richer each week.

The color continues to get darker but the color changes are very slight, so not a lot happening there. The change in taste is probably the most notable difference.

I'll be getting the barrel down from the attic for the study group tomorrow.

One note: last week when I went to remove the bung, there was pressure escaping from the top of the barrel. There was still a slight wetness around the bung, enough to see some tiny bubbles that indicated there was pressure being released from within. Maybe the bung was not pounded in tightly enough, but I've been removing it weekly and do not want to pound it in so tightly that I might break it from removing it so frequently.

JeffRenner
12-17-2005, 13:54
Maybe the bung was not pounded in tightly enough, but I've been removing it weekly and do not want to pound it in so tightly that I might break it from removing it so frequently.



Have you considered a white rubber stopper? You can get these in a variety of diameters from homebrew shops.

Jeff

kbuzbee
12-18-2005, 08:25
Sounds like you are right on schedule. Nice going!!! Keep us posted.

Ken

Ken Weber
12-18-2005, 13:22
Doug,
Ambient air temperature is important as it often indicates air pressure changes. I am in the camp that that as air pressure increases (because of the temperature increase within a closed barrel) the liquid is forced into the wood. Conversely, as the temperature drops, so does the pressure and the liquid is then drawn from the wood. Still, I believe the temperature of the liquid is quite important. Since the liquid temperature will lag the ambient temperature, daily changes are usually undectable in the liquid over a short period of time (a couple of days). Aside from not wanting the liquid to overheat (whatever that may mean), you just don't want it to drop below 44 degress F. Of course, the folks at HH have several unheated warehouses. Obviously they have different opinions than me. It is hard to argue with them given the taste of many of their fine whiskies!


Ken

dougdog
12-20-2005, 16:53
Ken,

I think with the bung not being as tight as possible the whiskey has not had the "force" to be pushed in and pulled out of the wood...the color of the samples has not changed as much as expected...and this may be why...

Ken, also...Why is 44 degrees the temperature chosen for: "not to drop below" ?

I took the 4th barrel sample out last Sunday evening and swatted the bung with a hammer to drive it in firmly. I intend to take monthly draws at this point in time...weekly seems to be too frequent. I'm going to ask the store owner where the barrels were purchased about new wooden bungs for spares (should the existing one break).

The taste of the whiskey keeps improving...woodiness does not seem to be increasing at all... the sensation of smoothness and richness does! I'm fairly comfortable that one month, unattended, will not be too long between checks.

I might have been reading the tell-tales on my new thermometer incorrectly... I believe that I am going to have to adjust the past temperature notes accordingly. I need to buy another thermometer to check my suspicion, I'll keep you posted.

Dougdog

brian12069
12-25-2005, 18:23
Doug,
I'm with you on this one! My wonderful wife bought me a 3 gallon barrel for Christmas. I have not decided what I am going to fill it with yet. She also got me a spigot and I am going to put this little beauty on the end of my bar in my basement. My question is...how do I filter the spigot JUST IN CASE something in the barrel gets in it? You see...in my case the spigot has to be filtered inside the barrel...thanks for any advice.

gr8erdane
12-26-2005, 01:16
You might try taking the spigot to a hardware store that has stainless screen filters for faucets. If lucky you might find one that will screw right onto the inside of the spigot. Plastic might work but that depends on the plastic used. I would go stainless steel. Another thought would be to fashion a cone out of stainless mesh that the open end will just fit into the inside end of the spigot with some pressure. By extending out into the barrel it would be less likely to become totally plugged by small bits of char. Just an idea from someone who used to have to deal with diesel fuel tanks full of sediment.

kbuzbee
12-27-2005, 08:09
Aren't wives GREAT?? Mine also decided I should have a 10 litre barrel. I think WT101 will grace it. Right now it's curing with water per the directions. Wed/Thursday will be "the filling"

brian12069
12-27-2005, 18:46
Water???...is it charred?

gr8erdane
12-27-2005, 21:16
Brian, they have to be soaked to make the staves swell together for a tight seal. The whiskey inside will keep the staves wet after it's filled. No telling how long that barrel has set on a shelf drying out waiting to be sold.

kbuzbee
12-28-2005, 13:48
... what Dane said. And, YES, it is charred. Medium.

Ken

dougdog
01-01-2006, 13:53
Gettin' started on Barrel #2...

This is the stock immediately available for consideration. I'll post a couple more pictures of 1/2 at a time.

I'm going to use a 3 gallon barrel, medium char, again...I'm going to take the 5'er back and exchange for two more, but this time they will be only lightly toasted barrels. I think I'd rather have many smaller experiments than a few larger ones.

More to come on that!

Dougdog

dougdog
01-01-2006, 14:04
1st half from right to left...

Wild Turkey will make a good base, both in flavor and proof, lots of McKenna and JW Dant for the HH influence, plus a few odds and ends for tweaking.

Dougdog

dougdog
01-01-2006, 14:11
The second half shows the "OLDies" Forester, Fitz, Crow, Taylor and Grand-Dad, plus a few more of those odds and ends for yet more tweaking.

GARY...What to do????

Mixture and ratio recommendations will be considered and appreciated. What would yours be?

Dougdog…

kbuzbee
01-01-2006, 14:27
Hey guys, this barrel has had water in it now since Christmas. It is still leaking a bit (1/4 cup?) right through the back. Their website says to cure it 3-5 days (last Friday) and then leave the water in another 5-7 days. Okay I realize this is only 7 days but I expected it to have stopped by now.

(Doug, I plan to to regular WT101 in mine if that impacts your decision. BTW, what is the Brown label WT you have there??)

Ken

Rughi
01-01-2006, 14:59
Doug,
Unfortunately, the potential windstorm that seems to be brewing would dissuade me from the drive, but I'll offer some thoughts.

If it were me, since the first barrel was a young, current-era, low rye barrel, I'd go with a high rye, golden-age blending. I'd use the Forester and Grand Dad you show and then assess whether to top up with a sweeter, high-corn whiskey like the Ancient Age, or perhaps a high bodied bottle.

Depending on how that tasted, I might add the Crow and Early Times just because it seems like they would have a lower rye simpatico with the Forester and Grand Dad. The yeastiness of the Crow might be especially good as a minor ingredient.

I'd save the Taylor and Charter for another exercise where the key would be to bring out the butterscotch and caramels that these 2 excelled at in their glory days.

The Bourbon deLuxe I'd use carefully on a batch on which I had high expectations. I'm not sure it's consistently of high quality.

I can't remember the Dant or McKenna in great detail...

Roger

dougdog
01-01-2006, 15:28
Ken, you wrote:



(Doug, I plan to do regular WT101 in mine if that impacts your decision. BTW, what is the Brown label WT you have there??)




Ken, somehow, if I recall correctly, you had previously mentioned your intent to use all WT 101 for your project and that has indeed already influenced mine. (We were going to swap barrel samples down the road, right?)

I was going to do standard WT 101, but now I've considered a little different twist. I have the availability of other bottles of WT products that others folks might not...so I thought to myself, why not use what is available my in my resource? That, coupled with a recent experience at "Oak Barrel" in Berkeley, has caused me to reconsider a couple things.

Bob, who works there, a friend of Roger, was kind to offer me a sip of his barrel project, (he has been doing this for about 18 months now) while I was shopping there a couple days ago. He explained his experience and thoughts regarding his past decisions, plus there were a few more thoughts thrown in by Homer along the way. (Homer is a very knowledgeable fellow) The whiskey tasted as though he/they knew what was going on. To say the least I was impressed. Aside from the fact that he blended many straight types of bourbon together to fill the barrel...the barrel of choice was lightly toasted...NOT charred.

(There are currently two lightly toasted barrels on order at the "Oak Barrel")

Bob had mentioned the whiskies used but I didn't write them down, and it seems that all were currently available pretty much US market wide...Beam White label, Forester Grand-Dad...etc.

For the second part of your post, The WT "Brown Label" you refer to is an early 80's bottling of an 86.8 proof version. It has a US government strip stamp with no numbers, in a 750ml bottle and has a bar code. Circa 82-84.

I have gone through my bunker and cleaned out some of the stuff that is overstock and found that I had plenty of resource to fill a three gallon barrel with out making a whiskey purchase. Most of the stock is in metric bottles, metric was kind of the dividing line for the thought process in decision making. (Actually, without calculating, there is probably enough to fill three 3 gallon barrels and still have some left over) But, extra whiskey allows for flexibility in tweaking the ratios that make a specific flavor profile while blending.

Anyway, the 2nd little barrel is going to get filled with water today.

Dougdog

kbuzbee
01-02-2006, 07:28
Ken, somehow, if I recall correctly, you had previously mentioned your intent to use all WT 101 for your project and that has indeed already influenced mine. (We were going to swap barrel samples down the road, right?)...

Anyway, the 2nd little barrel is going to get filled with water today.



Absolutely correct. I guess I was saying that, if this barrel EVER stops leaking, that is still my plan. And, yes, exchanging samples is high on my agenda. I can't wait to see how these come out. The lightly toasted is a good point I hadn't considered before, but it makes perfect sense. I'd thought that the effect of the char would diminish through succesive refillings to the point I'd want every bit of it I could get.... Time will tell.

Ken

Ken Weber
01-02-2006, 15:25
Doug,
Sorry I missed your question about the magic of 44 degrees. We have found that when the whiskey reaches 44 degrees, it becomes dormant. The aging process ceases as the liquid no longer migrates into the wood.

Ken

dougdog
01-02-2006, 20:40
Thanks Roger! You make some interesting observations and good points. (Spot on with your recollection of these good old whiskies)

I was striving for a whiskey with:

Complexity.

Full palate, bigger mouth feel.

Higher entry proof.

Heavy rye influence, cinnamon, clove and nutmeg spices

Lots of sweetness/caramel/rum/butterscotch/maple syrup.

Older starting age(s) than the AA previously used in barrel 1.

Darker color(s).

All these ingredients to build a bold nose, complex palate and a good warming finish in the next experiment. I tried to start with known "good" whiskies...each in their own right!

The picture shows Tim using a plastic "eye dropper" to mix measured portions of the corpus whiskies in a mockup blend.

More to come...

dougdog

dougdog
01-02-2006, 22:25
This is the picture of the selected whiskies. From left to right they are:

1. Kentucky Tavern, 8yo, 86 proof, 4/5 qt.
2. Ancient Age, NAS, 86 proof, 1 liter.
3. 2 Yellowstone, NAS, 86 proof, 1@ 1 quart, 1@ 750ml.
4. 2 Wild Turkey, Old #8, Nas, 101 proof, B1994, 2@ 1 liter.
5. Old Grand-Dad, NAS, 86 proof, ½ gallon.
6. J. W. Dant, 4yo, 80 proof, 1.75 liter, Old Style Whiskey.
7. Old Forester BIB, 4yo, 100 proof, 1.75 liter, distilled circa 1973, b 78.
8. 2 Old Taylor, NAS, 80 proof, 1.75 liter.
9. Henry McKenna, NAS, 80 proof, 1.75 liter, Louisville edition.

What are equally interesting were the ones that were not selected.

Tim arrived around noon, we didn’t know Roger was going to post, so, we started things off with discussion about the type of characteristics of the blend that we could make, using the whiskies on the table. One of the first things we decided was how much we were going to produce. We decided, three gallons for the barrel, 1 liter for Tim, One liter for Doug, a bottle for Roger who was at work, a bottle for archive and a bottle to take to Sampler/Gazebo this spring.

The next thing to do was eliminate the ones that did not taste good. This involved pouring each potential candidate into separate glasses for nosing…and then tasting. There were a few bad ones. (Note that these are older bottles and things can and do go bad inside the bottles over time. When newer, the whiskies would have been top in their class) The AA 86 proof quart bottle that we opened and found tasty at the last study group, had gone bad since opening, (rubber tires) and that one went straight down the drain, immediately followed by the 1.75 liters of Ezra brooks 7yo (dead fish).

We decided that a few others were neutral or surplus. The Bourbon DeLuxe was set aside to use in cooking, and the Old Fitz was put on hold if we decided to use its’ mint profile. Maker’s Mark, Old Crow, Ten High, Heaven Hill 6yo, Most of the Wild Turkey Old #8’s and the AA (buffalo Trace versions) will be used in another barrel project.

The ratio of each component was decided by using measured amounts of each to arrive with good combination and balance. Several models were constructed, nosed, tasted and discussed. Adjustments were made and a final recipe was determined. Bottles were then selectively removed from the line-up according to the ratio in the model. The picture demonstrates the bottle count and size that reflect the final ratios in the test glass.

I have a 5 gallon plastic jug that we used for the “Marriage” of the whiskies…we began pouring…and pouring…

That will lead us to the next picture…

doug

dougdog
01-03-2006, 19:09
There's Tim...dumpin' the last of the Old Grand-Dad into the big jug...

Tim is a good taster and knows good whiskey. He was instrumental in the creative process of making this blend...Thanks for your help Tim!

dougdog

TMH
01-03-2006, 21:48
Thanks for your help Tim!



I don't think the picture really shows all the hard work Doug put me through. He really worked my a## off! First he had me go through and taste the wide selection of his dusty corner finds, then he made me taste some more. This went on until the final selection was made. Can you believe he then made me drink the vatting of the best bourbons? http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif When I was finished with that, he had me eat this tasty pizza loaded with great meat toppings, which he had paid for. Can you imagine???!!! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif To top it all off, he gave me a quart of the vatting!

Doug, anytime you need someone to sacrifice themselves in the name of your rebarreling project, you can count on me. It's a dirty job, but someone has got to do it. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

Joeluka
01-05-2006, 19:20
I NEED HELP GETTING A BARREL HERE IN NEW YORK. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/banghead.gif Who do I call or order one from??? Please help me with this. By the way, Put me down for a bottle from all the Barrels being aged here.

Joe

Gillman
01-06-2006, 15:07
Guys, sorry I couldn't make suggestions due to still being on vacation with intermittent Internet access but what you have done sounds great! I am sure the vatting is of top quality, looking at the bottles that went into it. Many were older distillations and benefited from the fruity taste and heavier body whiskey had at the time so the combination must be very good especially if tweaked as you explained.

Doug, due to my present situation I wasn't able to follow this thread properly.

Is your plan, i) to age this vatting to come up with an improved version that can stand on its own and, ii) also develop thereby a seasoned barrel in which to age certain other whiskey and if so, what type i.e., do you intend to use a non-vatted whiskey for the rebarreling (say all Ancient Age?).

Gary

dougdog
01-10-2006, 11:54
Gary,

Timing is everything, sorry to miss your comment, hope vacation was grand.

Your comment about the whiskies used in this barrel was spot on, and even without further re-barreling it is a pleasant whiskey as it currently exists. It is rich and heavy with a good mature color. It is also moderately complex (multi dimensional) without over doing it.

Regarding the longer term/other use question, there is most definitely a plan for the future. The scary part is, that plan is growing by leaps and bounds. I was just going to use the first barrel in an attempt to further age a young bourbon that held good promise…hence the choice for AA. Barrel 2 was to develop a different profile of “filler material” to start off with and see what happens…

All “seasoned”/”used” barrels will go forward for “re-casking” Single Malts…..here’s where the scary part comes in….

(I apologize to all of you who are already scared to read any further because I used the words “Single Malt”)

I’m thinking about starting a couple more barrels…one with a price point Rum/Rhum and one with a price point Sherry. Which will now require me to learn more about rum and sherry (And I already have a little head-start on the rum)

That leads to more decision making later on about what will be used in those barrels once conditioned. Conditioning those will be done in periods of time frames much longer than three years and sampling/consumption will be done periodically on a refill/solera concept basis, so that will leave me some time to decide. I hope to have a little help from my friends...Of course it includes sampeling.

I just realized I need more little barrels….

Gotta go to Berkeley…BRB!

Dougdog

Gillman
01-10-2006, 12:32
Thanks Doug, it's all great planning and some of it intrepid to be sure.

The rum and sherry barrels can be used later, of course, for malt whisky (i.e., no less than the conditioned barrels that will have held bourbon). Or, you can use them to re-barrel a mingling of Canadian whiskies.

Rum has tremendous potential. I have a number of bottles of rums that are personal blends of between 10 and 30 brands. You can get great complexity by doing this and the best examples approach good whisk(e)y in quality and character.

I use a base of Demeraras (for rich treacle-like taste) or similar rums (e.g. Gosling) but I build on that by adding "spicy" rums such as Cubans, young white "agricole" rhums or a white overproof from Jamaica (the English equivalent to the agricoles more or less), and so on. So you get skeins of flavour running through a satisfyingly rich Demerara base, like say in a good blended Scotch.

Pirat (much spoken of here of late) is a blend of rums brought to a plant on Anguilla and blended there. This is what I do, too, in prosaic Toronto. I am not saying mine is as good as theirs but I get great complex yet balanced, smooth flavours with great finish. One of those aged in a seasoned bourbon barrel would be really good. I'll bring one of these bottled blends to the Gazebo.

Gary

kbuzbee
01-24-2006, 15:50
Well, tonight I filled the barrel. Regular WT101. I'm very much looking forward to tasting this as it ages. I will post to all as things progress (sorry Doug for piggybacking on your thread)

(I did take photos and will post as time allows)

Ken

kbuzbee
01-24-2006, 15:51
Thanks Doug, it's all great planning and some of it intrepid to be sure.

The rum and sherry barrels can be used later, of course, for malt whisky (i.e., no less than the conditioned barrels that will have held bourbon). Or, you can use them to re-barrel a mingling of Canadian whiskies.

Rum has tremendous potential. I have a number of bottles of rums that are personal blends of between 10 and 30 brands. You can get great complexity by doing this and the best examples approach good whisk(e)y in quality and character.

I use a base of Demeraras (for rich treacle-like taste) or similar rums (e.g. Gosling) but I build on that by adding "spicy" rums such as Cubans, young white "agricole" rhums or a white overproof from Jamaica (the English equivalent to the agricoles more or less), and so on. So you get skeins of flavour running through a satisfyingly rich Demerara base, like say in a good blended Scotch.

Pirat (much spoken of here of late) is a blend of rums brought to a plant on Anguilla and blended there. This is what I do, too, in prosaic Toronto. I am not saying mine is as good as theirs but I get great complex yet balanced, smooth flavours with great finish. One of those aged in a seasoned bourbon barrel would be really good. I'll bring one of these bottled blends to the Gazebo.

Gary

Rum, hadn't thought about doing rum. I was thinking about WT Rye though. I like it so much the way it is. Not sure what more time in the barrel would do. Opinions??

Ken

kbuzbee
02-01-2006, 07:36
Well, the second barrel is "aging" now. Had several candidates but, in the end, choose Maker's Mark. I looked and looked at it and I think this will work out well (at least I hope so). Wish me luck. Expecting 9-12 months will do it.

Ken

dougdog
02-26-2006, 19:26
On February 18th the whiskey study group met again at my home. The group was small but not lacking in enthusiasm or camaraderie. Prior to the evenings’ event I got into the two barrels of re-barreled whiskey and took samples. I made comparisons on color alone and was very pleasantly surprised. The color change was significant! Then I tasted the “vatting” that Tim and I had done just 6 weeks prior….Magnificent…sweet and smooth, totally richer and mellow. Tim agreed! This whiskey was quite dark going into the barrel but the color had deepened considerably…beautiful to look at in the glass and a delight to run past my nose and lips.

The AA in the other barrel had also had a dramatic color change. I suppose this is for two reasons, I followed Ken Weber’s’ advice and got the barrels where they would not drop below 44 degrees…and placed them where the temperatures would have a wider range and reach even higher temperatures. The attic was not the right place at this time of the year…I brought both barrels and placed them in my bonsai work studio. They are positioned on a table next to a south facing window wall in full sun. They warm up nicely in the day time and cool off in the evenings, the room never gets as cold as the attic and usually gets warmer.

This will change come summertime, but, for the winter months, the studio will do just fine.

I have purchased two more barrels. These are both 2 gallon capacity this time. One will be filled with a Bourbon Whiskey and the other with Rum. Both will be eventually used to re-barrel SMSW.

The previous leakage at the bung hole has been greatly reduced…it turns out that the bungs in the barrels are for shipping purposes only and were not intended for use after filling…you will note in the picture that the new bungs are of a different design…much taller!

I am very satisfied with the current progress of the re-barreling projects… I will bring samples (Before and after) to the Gazebo this spring.

cowdery
02-27-2006, 00:45
It sounds like you may be on to something. Finally, science for good.

Gillman
02-27-2006, 12:01
Excellent, Doug, you will have to decide if maturation through re-barreling will have to stop soon. If the whiskey is taking on so much color, it may continue past optimum point. This will be hard to judge at the beginning, but many of us felt rebarreling in small containers had a short horizon. Anyway continue on, I can't wait to try the results.

Gary

dougdog
02-27-2006, 14:24
Chuck…I don’t know how much “Science” is going on here; I’m just hoping that some of this stuff is drinkable.

The “drinkable” part is a side bar to the goal of getting a used barrel ready for re-barreling Single Malt Scotch or a vatting of single malts. (After vatting that last barrel of bourbon, I have decided to consider a vatting of malts) (Just putting all those vintage Bourbons and whiskies together made for a very nice glass of Whiskey) I’m also going to attempt re-barreling SMSW in a new barrel to see what happens….In Scotland; they like to put the whisky in used barrels. (I believe it is required by law) but it has been told, the raw spirit is too delicate for new wood…

One of the guys at the Oak Barrel, Bob, where I buy my new barrels, has done re-barreling of bourbon on more than one occasion. He has freely shared his experiences with me and has brought light and confirmation to several of the bits of advice given by others here on the site. His last batch that I got to sample was a vatting of the current releases of Old Grand–Dad 80 proof, Jim Beam white label, Old Forrester 80 proof and just a little bit of Makers’ Mark for some sweetness. I’m not sure even he remembers the exact ratios. Bob is the one that got things straightened out on the leaking bungs…

Back to the re-barreled Bourbon…There has been much discussion regarding the time frame necessary to get satisfactory results….all we have to do is define “Satisfactory” right?

At the end of the day it comes down to personal preference…

Too woody for one is just gettin’ to be enough barrel influence for another. Sweet for one is too sweet for another, and so on…

For me there are countless variables and combinations of certain qualities that make up a good whiskey…for example, there are times when I like strong oak influence, but not at the expense of the initial sweetness first hitting the tongue. Then, after noting primary sweetness, it is certainly acceptable to have that sweetness move on to a dry finish. I was born with a sweet tooth a mile wide, so if the old age and wood influence takes all the sweetness out of the picture, then I would probably not enjoy that whiskey as much.

Gary,

I suppose there will come a day when the whiskey in these little barrels will be over exposed to the wood. I will be archiving 750ml bottles along the way as significant changes are noted. Should at any time the whiskey go over the threshold of being pleasant, then it can be bottled and held to be used in the next vatting with younger less wooded whiskies to re-barrel and start all over with again….but someday, there will likely come a time when the wood has made its’ biggest contribution and the new whiskies can stay in the barrel without so much influence for longer periods of time.

Still more to learn about wood influence, Ken’s re-barreling experiments at Buffalo Trace are of interest to me; double barreling 4 year old bourbon in new barrels again might look like too much wood influence to some folks… I’m starting to think otherwise…I’m thinking “Double Rich”.

Best regards, dougdog

Gillman
02-27-2006, 15:23
That's a good point about a barrel reaching its natural limit at some point and the whiskey achieving stability from there. That may explain why 23 year old bourbons and older are drinkable. They may not have changed significantly from about 15 years old. This may vary too from barrel to barrel. This may explain also why malt whiskies, many of which are aged in reused bourbon wood, do not get sweet and char-smoky like bourbon. Most of those barrels in recent years would have been used 4-8 years (e.g. your typical Beam, Makers or JD barrel). One would think aging malt whiskey in those would make the whisky half-bourbon-like after 10-12 years in barrel but it doesn't. Many here know the familar "white wine" color of many such malts. The bourbon barrels probably gave their all to the bourbon when first emptied. Not that some change doesn't happen between 15-25 years but it may be minimal and not just that, change between 7-15 years may also be minimal.

Gary

BourbonJoe
02-28-2006, 07:55
That's a very good, and very believable point Gary.
Joe

Joeluka
02-28-2006, 11:25
That's a good point about a barrel reaching its natural limit at some point and the whiskey achieving stability from there. That may explain why 23 year old bourbons and older are drinkable. They may not have changed significantly from about 15 years old. This may vary too from barrel to barrel. This may explain also why malt whiskies, many of which are aged in reused bourbon wood, do not get sweet and char-smoky like bourbon. Most of those barrels in recent years would have been used 4-8 years (e.g. your typical Beam, Makers or JD barrel). One would think aging malt whiskey in those would make the whisky half-bourbon-like after 10-12 years in barrel but it doesn't. Many here know the familar "white wine" color of many such malts. The bourbon barrels probably gave their all to the bourbon when first emptied. Not that some change doesn't happen between 15-25 years but it may be minimal and not just that, change between 7-15 years may also be minimal.

Gary
They take first-fill used bourbon barrells and put a high proof grain spirit in them first at SMSW distilleries. This takes the rest of the char-smoke flavor out of the barrel and on the second-fill they put in the single malt and then let the barrel work the spirit for many years.

BourbonJoe
02-28-2006, 12:59
They take first-fill used bourbon barrells and put a high proof grain spirit in them first at SMSW distilleries. This takes the rest of the char-smoke flavor out of the barrel and on the second-fill they put in the single malt and then let the barrel work the spirit for many years.

What do they do with the high proof grain after they take it out of the barrels?
joe :usflag:

barturtle
02-28-2006, 13:05
The grain is used in Blended whisky. All whisky used in the production must be aged. and in the case of an age stated blend the grain must also be of the age stated

cowdery
03-02-2006, 03:10
Science: The observation, identification, description, experimental investigation, and theoretical explanation of phenomena.

If this isn't science I don't know what is, and not only science but important science of interest to dozens if not hundreds of people.

And future generations? Who truly knows.

Gillman
03-02-2006, 14:09
Doug, I've done a fair amount of work on vatting rums. Here is my experience: take a few types that are similar and blend them. E.g., blend some Demeraras with other dark rums. So you have a base of rich treacly rums, and then add not a lot of spicy different kinds. E.g. add some spiced rum to it, or some young Puerto Rican rums. So your flavor profile remains dark/rich but with skeins of flavour through the drink to add counterpoint and interest.

Or go the other way, do a base of white rums with skeins of dark. Or all-amber with trailings of a couple of high proof rums.

You can mix willy-nilly and it won't be bad but it is better in my view to work off a theme.




Gary

Gillman
03-04-2006, 12:39
Sounds great keep going! Doug before you enter the vatting, please give us a taste note.

Gary

dougdog
03-04-2006, 20:43
to the NON-WHISKEY ALCOHOL section of the forum...'cause it's Rum...What the heck was I thinking?

OOOOOPS!....Sorry Jim!

When I get around to filling "Barrel #4" we can resume here...it will have Bourbon in it!

dougdog
03-26-2006, 18:41
I finally got around to compiling all the totals...

Barrel #2 contents…Vintage Whiskies…all pre 1984….all tax stamped closures.


24% (2) Old Taylor, Bourbon, 86 proof, NAS, 1.75 liters.


12% (1) Old Forester, Bourbon, 100 proof, (Bond) 4 years old, 1.75 liters.


5% (1) Kentucky Tavern, Bourbon, 86 proof, 8 years old, 4/5ths quart.


7% (1) Ancient Age, Bourbon, 86 proof, NAS, 1 quart.


12% (1) J. W. Dant “Old Style” Whiskey, 80 proof, 4 years old, 1.75 liters. (Indiana)


12% (1) Henry McKenna, Bourbon, 80 proof, NAS, 1.75 liters. (Louisville)


13% (2) Yellowstone, Bourbon, 86 proof, 4 years old, 1 quart. (Louisville)


14% (1) Wild Turkey, Bourbon, Old #8, 101 proof, NAS, 1liter.

dougdog
03-30-2006, 19:32
With the news that Jake is coming to town next month and him wanting to sample some barrels, I thought I’d do a little check on Barrel number one. (If you remember, this is the barrel with only AA in it) It has been a few weeks or more since I got into that one and wanted to “see” how things are doing in there.

I started earlier today by stopping of at the local liquor store and bought another 750ml of new AA and a bottle of Everclear. I wanted to get a taste of what the whiskey first started as and compare that to what it is today…the everclear is to help boost the barrel proof if the flavor aspect of things works out…

First, I extracted 750mls from the barrel and bottled that as a sample for next months get together. I took another portion and put it in a snifter, probably about 75-100 ml. WOW!...the color is real good now, quite delightful to look at. In another snifter, I poured some of the “new” AA, and in yet another I poured some Everclear.

I nosed and tasted the regular AA, and then I nosed and tasted the barrel sample, then the everclear…

I mixed a bit of the everclear in with the regular AA and found the boost in ABV to be quite pleasant…now for the real test…I put some everclear in the sample drawn today and the extra boost was well received there as well. I decide to go ahead and dump the bottle of everclear in the barrel. I’ll let that sit for a month and we can all sample it again when Jake is in town. (I’m considering dumping another one in the barrel as the one bottle dumped today will not represent the ratios in the barrel to those I set up in the glass for the testing.)

So that’s the latest on barrel number one for now…hopefully someone will post some tasting notes after Jakes’ visit.

dougdog
04-10-2006, 09:55
This weekend, Friday evening to be exact, Roger stopped by the house and we got into barrel #2 to check the progress.....geees, this stuff smells good!

We thieved a couple samples and put it into two snifters to "review" the progress. Roger and I agreed it was quite delightful and with Rogers' experienced palate a determination was made that the new wood/barrel influence was sufficient to stop the ageing process.

Saturday morning the transfer was made from the barrel into the 5 gallon carboy. I used a large funnel that was equipped with a brass screen to hold the larger chunks of the char that the barrel released over the last couple months. (There was about a 1/2 of a sandwich bag of charcoal that came out of the barrel)

Now in the big glass bottle, the 2nd, refinement, filtering process was done when downsizing the bourbon into 1.75 liter bottles. I found that a coffee filter was to slow and wound up using a paper towel to complete the filtering process. I changed the paper towel filter every time a 1.75 was filled. The barrel yielded 4 1.75's and the better part of a 200ml.

I will bring sample bottles of "before" and "after" to the Gazebo in a few weeks.

"Empty" Barrel #2 now awaits further disposition.

pepcycle
04-10-2006, 15:33
I'd like to see the difference against a neutal (White) background.
I can't wait.
Prime Rib, Manhattans, Gazebo, Rebarrel!!!!
Ed

Jake_Parrott
04-10-2006, 15:39
So dougdog's invocation of Everclear has me thinking...perhaps we should chip in and barrel a barrel-proof-or-close (say, 107pf or higher) barrel. I'll nominate dougdog for the husbandry. Dunno....just something about using everclear that seems to play around with the concept.

dougdog
04-10-2006, 17:41
I'd like to see the difference against a neutal (White) background.
I can't wait.
Prime Rib, Manhattans, Gazebo, Rebarrel!!!!
Ed

Ed, strangely enough, I haven't compared the color yet from this barrel (#2) to the original archive sample. I'll see if I can get two bottles of the same size and shape that can demonstrate the color change, if there is one, in a photograph...this whiskey started out rather dark to begin with...that was one of the important factors in choosing the whiskies that went into the original vatting.

(The more significant color change has been realized in the AA barrel #1...I'll be bringing samples of re-barreled AA too) (BTW Jake, the AA barrel is the whiskey that I added the Everclear to, not the vatting in barrel #2, that whiskey was able to stand on its' own without boosting proof...you'll see.)

Doug - I'm not a good husband...just ask my ex-wife - dog

(actually Jake, I'd like to hear more about your idea!)

dougdog
04-10-2006, 18:16
I just realized when gathering the information for the contents of barrel #2, I omitted the Old Grand-Dad that was in Tim's hand in the picture...the revised list looks like this:

Barrel #2 contents…Vintage Whiskies…all pre 1984….all tax stamped closures.


21% (2) Old Taylor, Bourbon, 86 proof, NAS, 1.75 liters.


10% (1) Old Forester, Bourbon, 100 proof, (Bond) 4 years old, 1.75 liters.


4% (1) Kentucky Tavern, Bourbon, 86 proof, 8 years old, 4/5ths quart.


5% (1) Ancient Age, Bourbon, 86 proof, NAS, 1 quart.


10% (1) J. W. Dant “Old Style” Whiskey, 80 proof, 4 years old, 1.75 liters. (Indiana)


10% (1) Henry McKenna, Bourbon, 80 proof, NAS, 1.75 liters. (Louisville)


11% (2) Yellowstone, Bourbon, 86 proof, 4 years old, 1 quart. (Louisville)


12% (2) Wild Turkey, Bourbon, Old #8, 101 proof, NAS, 1liter.


11% (1) Old Grand-Dad , Bourbon, 86 proof, NAS, ½ gallon.

Dumbdog

kbuzbee
04-11-2006, 15:18
Now in the big glass bottle, the 2nd, refinement, filtering process was done when downsizing the bourbon into 1.75 liter bottles. I found that a coffee filter was to slow and wound up using a paper towel to complete the filtering process.


How did that paper towel thing work out, Doug?? I've always heard paper towels were not good for things like this because of chemicals used in processing.... No worries though??

Mine are still chugging along.

Oh - FYI - I was thinking about using my Toddy Coffee maker as the filter:

http://www.toddycafe.com/customerservice/instructions.php

It's wide at the top so it can catch the dump and has a small hole that should be able to be directed into the bottle. It has a fibre style filter. What do you think?

It makes terrible coffee but may find new life with Bourbon

Ken

dougdog
04-12-2006, 09:29
Ken,

I used only a ¼ sheet of a pure white Brawny paper towel, the filter/funnel is shown in an earlier post here on this thread. The funnel is a two part device. I separated the funnel and sandwiched the small piece of paper towel between the halves. The paper towel has a bit loser weave than the coffee filters I use in my Mr. Coffee machine. The towel worked just fine to remove the remaining ultra fine charcoal “dust”. Particles smaller than the paper towel removed would be a non issue as far as I’m concerned. The whiskey is clear. (Ed, I did check the color to the original blend, it is darker, deeper red color. I don’t think the camera is going to be able to demonstrate the change…you’ll just have to see for yourself at Sampler/Gazebo time) IMHO it is some of the most unusual and spectacular color I have ever experienced in a Bourbon. It is best described as similar to the color change that well sherried scotches exhibit when compared to their bourbon barrel counterparts.

I’m watching for any sediment to form in the bottom of the bottles to give me an idea on the filtering capabilities of the products used. Just as a side note, some of the vintage bottles that I have found in the past have a significant amount of sediment in the bottles. I usually just give the bottle a shake and it goes right back into solution. (Probably fatty acids that were left in the whiskey prior to those days of “chill-filtering” where bottlers now days strip out all the flavor of the whiskey to keep it getting “cloudy”:smiley_acbt: ) (I don’t think it takes too much text on a label to educate consumers to the advantage gained in flavor, heck, the “haze” could be viewed as a badge of honor or bragging rights given the right verbage!:cool: ...I digress) (BTW, you good folks at BT, keep up the good work here, you are miles ahead of the competition:grin: …I digress yet again…sheeees!:skep: )

I had no concerns about any chemical residue in the paper towel being a factor…maybe I should have? I’m not a chemist and I don’t know what, if any, negative potential lies in the process I used. The paper towel did not dissolve or fall apart.

As for what you are going to use, I really don’t know…this remains an experiment…so, just keep on experimenting! I say, try it!

I personally appreciate all the comments that have been laid out here on this thread. They give me, and hopefully others, plenty to consider when making decisions. They have been quite helpful in these projects so far.

Is it Sampler time yet...just a couple weeks!:bigeyes: I’ve never had a Manhattan, so I’m very much looking towards Gary’s’ mixology and dinner with all you whiskey folks.:cool:

Jake_Parrott
04-12-2006, 09:52
You've never had a Manhattan? Oh you poor thing!

Gillman
04-12-2006, 11:28
I will do my best and in light of Doug not having had one before, I will mix it in front of him and the group which suits also the transport issues I mentioned earlier. Just to give people an idea, I plan to get some good quality (but not best - this is a cocktail and blending makes it best!) wheat-recipe bourbon, maybe Charter 8 or 10 or some Old Fitzgerald. I will also get a good straight rye whiskey, to put some rye in the picture and also get some blending going. Then, probably some Canadian whisky that is not too old, to soften and lighten ("display") the flavors a bit.

For bitters, probably I'll use at least, Collins orange and maybe some Peychaud's.

For vermouth, I am not sure which kind (save that it must be red), I might get Cinzano or Nouilly's.

Finally, again I am not sure, but I might put in a dash of Herbsaint or another anise-flavored drink. Early Manhattan recipes call for that. Maybe make one jug with, one without.

Stirred not shaken.

Cherries. Cocktail sticks.

Ice optional.

Here's to ya.

Gary

Jake_Parrott
04-12-2006, 11:34
Would someone from California please bring Mr. Gillman a few bottles of Vya sweet vermouth?

kbuzbee
04-12-2006, 12:13
By the way - I used a funnel w/ coffee filter to draw the last samples. Worked well for that quantity. The WT barrel is aging nicely. This is going much quicker than I'd expected. The wood and char notes are maybe 30% increased from the base sample, giving the pour a nice oaky overtone, there is a hint of bitterness at the end, perhaps additional filtering (or letting it settle) would take care of that, but it was very enjoyable. The biggest change was in the nose which was more full than stock 101 (but nothing at all like Kentucky Spirit or Tribute) more like Russel's Reserve (the retired one).

Thanks for the input,

Ken

NorCalBoozer
04-12-2006, 14:48
Hi Ken,

just re-read this thread and noticed that you had a WT 101 and Makers rebarrelling going on. Seems there are at least 5 different barrels going on right now and it gets a bit hard to follow a certain one as we all talk about them in the same thread.

I'm wondering if we should have a different thread for each barrel or maybe a whole re-barrelling section? Would be much easier to follow startup conditions and progress for each.

thoughts anyone?

I have a barrel of WT rye right now that I filled a few weeks back and another waiting to be filled.


Greg

jeff
04-13-2006, 05:18
You can get Vya vermouth in KY. I haven't seen it in Lexington, but the Cork and Bottle in Covington has some. $17.99 for 750ml.

Jake_Parrott
04-13-2006, 05:36
You can get Vya vermouth in KY. I haven't seen it in Lexington, but the Cork and Bottle in Covington has some. $17.99 for 750ml.
I won't be at Bardstown, so someone please keep Mr. Gillman from having to use Cinzano or Noilly rouge in his Manhattans!

Gillman
04-13-2006, 07:49
I appreciate all these suggestions. Leave it to me. :)

Gary

kbuzbee
04-13-2006, 15:20
I'm wondering if we should have a different thread for each barrel or maybe a whole re-barrelling section? Would be much easier to follow startup conditions and progress for each.

thoughts anyone?

I have a barrel of WT rye right now that I filled a few weeks back and another waiting to be filled.

Great ideas Greg, I didn't want to start a new thread on mine for the 4-6 posts it would likely have. I think keeping the traffic is this one thread isn't too bad but perhaps a new section would be the right thing to do? If it gets created, I'll post a separate one on each of mine.

I like the idea of WT rye. I thought about that for a long time before choosing Makers as my second barrel. In the end I think I just like WT Rye too much the way it is... But I'd love to try yours when it's done. Wanna trade??? I won't be at Gazebo this year or I'd bring some of each. The WT is shaping up nicely. The Makers is lagging a bit but also making great progress.

Ken

NorCalBoozer
04-13-2006, 15:58
maybe we need to just keep our own records. I think it's valuable information and it would be even more valuable/easier to utilize in the future if each was separate. That way we could keep track of startup conditions, changes, things added, tastings, etc. It may not be enough to have a new thread for each, in retrospect.

I'll keep records as much as I can. :cool:

It's pretty interesting stuff. I'll surely trade you some Rye for some WT. I'm using a 2 gallon toasted barrel. The temp here has been in the mid to low 60's since I filled it, so I suspect not much has changed. need to get some heat around here.

I'm still undecided on my second barrel (also a 2 gal toasted).

wadewood
04-13-2006, 16:53
You can get Vya vermouth in KY. I haven't seen it in Lexington, but the Cork and Bottle in Covington has some. $17.99 for 750ml.

That's a good price. I can find this in WA state, but it is only carried in 375ml bottles for about $12.

kbuzbee
04-14-2006, 07:56
It's pretty interesting stuff. I'll surely trade you some Rye for some WT. I'm using a 2 gallon toasted barrel. The temp here has been in the mid to low 60's since I filled it, so I suspect not much has changed. need to get some heat around here.


You California people...... :grin: I've had a heater going on the porch to keep it up to 45! We're seeing 60s now though. I was surprized how much the WT barrel had changed. I'm looking forward to seeing what the warmer days bring.

Ken

NorCalBoozer
04-14-2006, 12:14
hmmm I think I'll take a sample this weekend just to see whats doing in there.

I'm thinking maybe I should get a wagon and pull it down to the beach and let it roast in the sand for a bit once it heats up.:grin:



You California people...... :grin: I've had a heater going on the porch to keep it up to 45! We're seeing 60s now though. I was surprized how much the WT barrel had changed. I'm looking forward to seeing what the warmer days bring.

Ken

NorCalBoozer
04-15-2006, 16:43
I took the first sample of my WT Rye barrel. It was filled on 3-18 and is a 2 gallon toasted. The weather has been rainy and highs not greater than 60's since it was filled.

The sample color was very close to the original.

The flavor had a noticeable wood/char taste to it.

My guess is that since the barrel hasn't reached high enough temperatures, it hasn't been able to warm/cold cycle to get in and out of the char/wood layer. I think it's only been able to pick up the char in the barrel.

hopefully it will warm up so I can get some action, but I'm concerned that if it doesn't get heat, it might get too much of this char/wood flavor.

kbuzbee
04-16-2006, 07:03
I'm thinking maybe I should get a wagon and pull it down to the beach and let it roast in the sand for a bit once it heats up.:grin:

:rolleyes: yadda yadda yadda....:rolleyes:

:lol:

dougdog
05-25-2006, 09:21
Barrel #1 was finally put back in glass on May 6th 2006. This was the AA whiskey that I added some Everclear to, about the beginning of April.

The whiskey is a richer deeper color with a richer and deeper nose, palate and finish.

I would consider the experiment a success by all measures and most of all a great learning experience. I think the total time in the barrel was a bit over 4 months.

There has been a great deal of help on this project from others here on the forum, Thanks go out to all those who have contributed in any way!

Future plans for the empty barrel are now forming...any suggestions?

Please post your thoughts and comments....

Thanks!

Gillman
05-25-2006, 09:30
And thanks to you Doug for the samples of same (and the others) at Sampler. I found the before and after versions each had their merits. I liked the effect the Everclear had on the barreled version. I found a light "resin" scent in both the pre-rebarreled and reballed versions. At first I thought the rebarreling imparted it but that can't be because the non-rebarreled has it too. It must be a characteristic of Ancient Age whiskey but somehow it seemed intensified in the rebarreling. As for reuse, you have many options!

Gary

kbuzbee
12-01-2006, 06:00
Well, after much agonizing, I finally decided to dump both barrels yesterday. They went much longer than I'd originally intended. I suspect partly this was due to the relatively constant temperatures on the porch. I've been sampling them right along and was kinda getting worried they would go "too far". Pick up too much barrel and hide the nature of the underlying spirit.

The barrels suffered a lot of "shrinkage". They leaked a bit (the wife was NOT happy about that!) I'd say maybe .5 litre, and 6 x 2 oz samples the rest had to be evaporation.... 21 litres in was slightly over 12 litres out! That was the Wild Turkey barrel. The Maker's barrel was smaller but the ratio was about the same. I was pretty amazed. No wonder the porch always smelled like Bourbon (again, the wife was NOT happy about that!). Anyone who thinks aging their own is a good way to save money while moving to a higher end product should do the math....... Oh well. It was a fun experiment.

So last night I poured a couple ounces of each. Nosed them for a while. You definately get more wood & char in the nose than in their origional expressions. Not clobbering but more and I liked it. Lingered there for a while. Then sipped the WT. Sweet like WT tends to be but without most of the edge it usually has. Now I don't mind that edge but this was nice. A bit more refined than WT tends to be, I suppose. Like the nose, there is more wood and char than regular 101 but it is at a nice level I really enjoyed. Can't say how it compares to the better WT products. I'm going to do a vertical and see how it fares.

The Maker's was next and, not too surprizingly I would say most of the same things about it. Following the WT it took my tastebuds a few sips to move the rye out and move the wheat in, but I got there. It was a wonderful deep version of Makers. Much like what I'd always thought Maker's should taste like.

This experiment was interesting. I wasn't at all sure what to expect. My hope was to get a deeper version of what I'd started with. My fear was the additional aging would cover up everything except the additional aging. What I found with each was the same general trending (of additional oak and char) but I was happy to see that each spirit had retained it's basic nature. That had been enhanced, deepened and somewhat smoothed out but each was clearly the product of it's origions.

Ken

dougdog
12-01-2006, 09:20
Very cool Ken!

I was not sure what had become of your barrel project. The deeper/smoother notes of which you have spoken are just the thing I was looking for in my own projects, I'm happy that yours turned out well...

I too, would mention that this is not a cost saving venture, but it makes for some good tasting whiskey and as you mentioned it is interesting.

My original offer to trade samples still stands...PM and we can work out the details if interested.

Any plans on what to do with your barrels next? (Mine are sitting mostly empty untill the next thought process emerges...I do keep them "wet" inside with Bourbon or rum respectively while in storage so there is some maintainance due to evaporation.)

Almost forgot...for how long was the whiskey re-barreled?

Jake_Parrott
12-01-2006, 18:46
Is it not about time to start rebarreling blended Scotch in some of these? I'd like to see what'd happen to J&B or Dewars.

Gillman
12-01-2006, 19:50
Yes, but add some extra malts to them. :)

Gary

Jake_Parrott
12-01-2006, 20:28
I don't want to commit these guys to too dear an investment :).

kbuzbee
12-02-2006, 10:13
My original offer to trade samples still stands...PM and we can work out the details if interested.

Absolutely.


Any plans on what to do with your barrels next?

No, wife's so happy to have her porch back it'll be a while. I wasn't sure how to store them. Right now they are as yours.


Almost forgot...for how long was the whiskey re-barreled?

It was almost a year. They went in mid-late January 06 (WT went in first). As I mentioned, this was longer than I'd initially thought to leave them. I expected they would reach a point I was looking for around 6mo but such was not the case.

Ken

kbuzbee
01-09-2007, 13:37
Well, Doug's samples arrived today....

First - Doug's Blend Barrel #2 -
Sight - very leggy - Nice! Med dark amber.
Nose - Wonderful nose - very bright - almost floral
Palate - Sweet and smooth, still with the floral notes, a touch of burn (a desirable burn - IMO) with touches of pecan.... interesting
Finish - Med. Continuation of the palate that diminishes in 20-30sec leaving a slight alcohol taste behind. Interesting as the overall experience was a bit "older" but it finished kinda young.

Second - Ancient Age Barrel #1
Sight - Med amber - slightly leggy
Nose - Sweet, notes of oak, corn and a slight touch of spice
Palate - Sweet and smooth, very oaky (not smokey but oak wood) and a touch "sappy" and a bit of maple flavor
Finish - Short and smooth. No alcohol taste, with final notes of Maple.

Thanks Doug! Nicely done.

What a treat.

Ken