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View Full Version : Re-Barreling - help please!



HighTower
05-24-2007, 04:36
I have been thinking of getting a small oak barrel, approx 1.5 - 2 Litres, and rebarreling some Maker's mark. I know there are people here who have experience with rebarreling, and I have read through those threads, but the barrels I have access to are not toasted/charred. They are typically made to hold port.
What effect would these barrels have on bourbon, how would they age in comparison to a charred barrel? Should I get one of these barrels and also put bourbon chips in there?
Any thoughts would be appreciated!


Scott

jwrussell
05-24-2007, 07:01
I'll be interested in seeing the responses from those more knowledgeable, but I guess my questions would be:
Are you going to char the barrel?
What kind of climate do you have in Brisbane?
How long are you planning on rebarreling it for?

Rughi
05-24-2007, 07:37
the barrels I have access to are not toasted/charred.
Scott

I think it's pretty likely the barrels are charred, as heating the staves to make them pliable was the original reason for toasting.

If you consider yourself handy with tools, you could open up an end and char it yourself. The local homebrew shop does this whenever they have a customer wanting a charred barrel and they can only get toasted for awhile. I haven't done this myself, but it can be done.

Depending on what you want from your rebarrel, you may not want a charred barrel. If you do use a charred barrel, you may want to run it first with a cooking quality whiskey, as it will put out strong amounts of char and sweet oak within days, and I imagine with Maker's you're looking for the complexity and depth that time will give more than the "quick aging" of a virgin tiny barrel.

Good luck
Roger

HighTower
05-24-2007, 16:28
If you consider yourself handy with tools, you could open up an end and char it yourself.


Roger, I would have pieces left over, and I would consequently have Maker's everywhere!:lol:

Scott

HighTower
05-24-2007, 16:45
Depending on what you want from your rebarrel, you may not want a charred barrel. If you do use a charred barrel, you may want to run it first with a cooking quality whiskey, as it will put out strong amounts of char and sweet oak within days, and I imagine with Maker's you're looking for the complexity and depth that time will give more than the "quick aging" of a virgin tiny barrel.

Good luck
Roger
I guess what I've been wondering is, what would Maker's be like if it was older. I have a 101 proof Maker's, which I haven't opened yet, but it is so much deeper in color, although I don't fancy adding GNS or Pappy 15 to Maker's Mark :)

Scott

HighTower
05-24-2007, 16:51
I'll be interested in seeing the responses from those more knowledgeable, but I guess my questions would be:
Are you going to char the barrel?
What kind of climate do you have in Brisbane?
How long are you planning on rebarreling it for?
If I can, maybe (also based on what I've read here) get the barrel toasted.
We are currently in Autumn, and winter starts here on the 1st of June. I haven't yet been here for a winter, last winter I was on the coast of Northern New South Wales, and let me tell you that can get cold. :)
I am fairly far inland here, not a hint of a sea breeze, although December through April we get immense dry heat.
How long? I don't really know, I guess sampling it every now and then will let me know how it's going...I'd also be willing to hear peoples opinions on how long they think ...

Regards
Scott

camduncan
05-24-2007, 17:34
Scott, if you need help charring the barrel..... I'm always happy to play with fire :hot: :slappin:

HighTower
05-25-2007, 05:55
Scott, if you need help charring the barrel..... I'm always happy to play with fire :hot: :slappin:
Thanks Cam, maybe we need to put some bookers in it, roll it around then drop a match in!

Scott

Phischy
05-25-2007, 09:32
There's an ebay seller in the US that sells newly charred barrels, I'd have to read some of those threads as I've thought of doing this myself.

jwrussell
05-25-2007, 10:17
Don't know if they'll ship to Australia, but try:

www.oldworldbarrel.com (http://www.oldworldbarrel.com). Anything from 1L on up.

cowdery
05-25-2007, 15:11
The barrel that's available to you should be fine. Aging an already-aged, bottling-proof whiskey in a small, new, charred oak barrel could easily be too much char. Re-aging or plus-aging a bottled whiskey is pretty much uncharted territory so anything you do will be interesting. A small, new, uncharred barrel intended for aging port will have goodies to give and will have an effect of the Maker's.

Maker's Mark is a good choice as "older Maker's Mark" is one of those items on many a whiskey enthusiast's wish list.

In the USA, Maker's sells only the one, 90 proof expression. If you have a higher proof expression available, use that. Use the highest proof expression you can get.

And keep us posted.

HighTower
05-26-2007, 05:06
We only have 86 proof red wax, although 1L bottles of the 90 can be purchased duty free. I do have some 90 proof here, but one is a signed 9-11 bottle, one is a signed VIP and the other is an Affirmed bottle, so I won't be using those :)
I do have a gold wax 101, but this is something I will drink one day, I don't really want to put it in a barrel, I wanted to use something that is readily available and see how it changes. I have a branding iron with the Maker's mark logo on it, that would look pretty cool stamped on a little barrel!

I was also thinking about doing a JD barrel, maybe a 4.5L with a 700mL of GJ in it, then top it off with black label...any thoughts??

Scott

barturtle
05-26-2007, 21:26
If you don't mind spending on the barrels, it might be interesting to do two 2L barrels, one of just jack and one with half a bottle of GJ in it to see the difference the addition brings

kbuzbee
05-30-2007, 12:05
I guess what I've been wondering is, what would Maker's be like if it was older. I have a 101 proof Maker's, which I haven't opened yet, but it is so much deeper in color, although I don't fancy adding GNS or Pappy 15 to Maker's Mark :)

Scott

Hi Scott, I did a barrel of Maker's 90 and one of Wild Turkey 101 last year. It was a fun experiment and one I count as a great sucess.

Our weather runs from 0f - 90f but less extreme on the 3 season porch housing these barrels. 40f - 60f in winter and 70f to 80f in summer.

The barrels were both medium char (as purchased from 1000oaks). The WT was 5 gal the Maker's was ~3.5 gal.

I left both barrels aproximately 1 year.

I chose these two as they are both selections I've thought would be much better if they were a bit older. In the end I vastly prefered the results of the WT barrel over the Maker's - though both were very good and IMO much improved. I like a smokier, woodier Bourbon so the char worked well for me. I'm sure uncharred would have a positive effect but I liked these. Both were much deeper with much stronger wood notes, more viscous and deeper sweet flavors.

NOTES -

It's likely your barrel will leak, some to alot. Even if you soak the barrel in warm water - which I did for several weeks prior. They leaked alot initially. Less over time. I topped off both twice. The leak is a real mess. I'd recommend placing them on a plastic sheet.

In a confined environment you'll get a STRONG bourbon smell. I kinda liked that but my wife definately did not!

I experienced a "mold" growth over the entire porch (which took time and work to clean. Chuck said rick houses see this as well. It apears the high humidity and the evaporated bourbon encourage this growth so expect it.

Regular tasting is necessary to tell when your bourbon is "ready". Small samples every 2-4 months should do. It isn't fast a process process (except compared to aging a full sized barrel, which takes many years). It helps sampling if you get a spigot.

It is ovbious but save your bottles to store the aged result!

Enjoy!

Ken

cowdery
05-30-2007, 15:15
The black fungus is Torula compniacensis Richon. You will find it wherever distilled spirits are aged, whether in Cognac, Scotland or Kentucky. Everything I've ever read says it is harmless. It washes off with soap and water. Some distilleries wash it off, others just leave it alone. One thing I get a kick out of is the trees. The bark of trees growing close to whiskey warehouses is black, but they seem okay otherwise.

mier
05-30-2007, 15:25
Keep in mind that any spirit in small barrels are aging quicker than in big ones so your whiskey can go over the top if you wait to long to drink it.Every once in a while you have to sample it but it is a very intresting expiriment.I would not char the barrel but make a portfinish Makers Mark.Try to keep it in the barrel for about 16 months to see how it works out.Keep us informed!Eric.

HighTower
05-30-2007, 17:36
I have decided on doing 3 barrels, each 1.5L.
One will be Maker's Mark, one will be Jack Daniels, and the other will be a 50/50 mix of Gentleman Jack and regular JD.
Here's the barrel I will be using. They are uncharred.
http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c132/dickheadofthemonth/barrel.jpg
The barrel diameter is 15cm; length is:19.5cm

Scott

jwrussell
05-30-2007, 17:58
Very cool! Keep us posted.

mozilla
06-01-2007, 15:12
Hightower, I was curious as to why you would choose a whisky such as gent. jack, which has been filtered twice to rebarrel?
I would think that some young Heaven Hill would show much more improvement for the money.
I am planning an experiment of my own with a recently found barrel from United Dist. Have not figured out which bourbon to choose. I have alot more spce to fill up.
Does anyone know if whisky barrels will leak as much as the ones previosly mentioned?
Jeff

HighTower
06-01-2007, 18:18
Hightower, I was curious as to why you would choose a whisky such as gent. jack, which has been filtered twice to rebarrel?
I would think that some young Heaven Hill would show much more improvement for the money.
I am planning an experiment of my own with a recently found barrel from United Dist. Have not figured out which bourbon to choose. I have alot more spce to fill up.
Does anyone know if whisky barrels will leak as much as the ones previosly mentioned?
Jeff
Jeff,

It was actually from a suggestion that was made earlier in this thread by Timothy (barturtle) and I thought it could be interesting to see what happens.

Scott

Pastor Bourbon
06-08-2007, 21:47
HighTower,

Pastor Bourbon here... I've got the information for a barrel maker in the wider Brisbane area if you're interested. I've been looking into getting one myself for rebarreling. I'd be happy to pass on the info if you wish :)

polyamnesia
11-25-2007, 10:14
...I would think that some young Heaven Hill would show much more improvement for the money....Does anyone know if whisky barrels will leak as much as the ones previosly mentioned?
Jeff


i was just looking into this idea myself.

what about vatting AND re-barreling? perhaps that HH with some older HH? i know, the possibilities are endless.

by the way, that site suggested here--http://www.oldworldbarrel.com/--is interesting. anyone else get one of these? they are really much more inexpensive than i thought.