I'm not sure where I read this, but I recall that someone was interested in finding little barrels for home aging of whiskey. I'd known that World Cooperage (www.cooperage.com), apparently one of the biggest suppliers to the industry, has toasted oak sticks and chips for use in old barrels or other containers to provide the effect of new charred oak, but I recently came across another site (www.littlebarrels.com) that sells oak barrels made from big wine barrels and toasted in the 1-5 liter range. They include bungs, wood spigots and stands, and may be a novelty item (they're described as being varnished on the outside) but the site has detailed descriptions of their use for aging spirits. Besides, the varnish may reduce the "angel's share" in such small barrels. Let me know if any of you try one of these - this sounds like something that would fit right in to John and Linda Lipman's living room!

Ralph Wilps