Re: [new_distillers] Oaking for color and flavor...
> 3. Oaking for color and flavor...For Bourbon, charred oak is the key to the rich red color and deep flavor.
> Posted by: "Michael Eyre" meyre@... drdoom74
> Date: Mon Jul 24, 2006 5:57 am (PDT)
> So, in about ¼ gallon of 42% product, Im putting about 6 finger length
> sticks of white oak toasted at 450 degrees for 4.5 hours. The color,
> after two months, isnt very dark, and although the flavor isnt bad,
> its not the deep, big Bourbon flavor that I was hoping for. I was
> thinking about using a mixture of the toasted oak Id already used, some
> plain oak, untoasted, and some darker, charcoaled oak, sort of a cross
> section of the wood that the whiskey might encounter in a real barrel
> do you think Im on to something, or am I grasping at straws? Im just
> mostly looking for some more complexity in the stuff, and a really deep
> color and big flavor.
Take some unused, un-toaste, or ligtly toasted oak fingers and set them aflame
with a torch and let them go for about one minute. Toss them into some
drinking quality water to extinguish the flames. Light them up once more (more
torch work to drive the water out...the steam action should act in a similar
fashion as steam is used in 'activated' charcoal, too) and quench them once
more almost immediately. You can either oven dry them or let them air dry, and
replace 2 or 3 of the fingers you're already using.
The goal is to get a partial char. The boundary layer between the blackened
carbon layer and the unaffected wood is where the red is formed by the
caramelization of the sugars in the wood (among other reactions). You should
notice the difference with the added charred oak.