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Re: [new_distillers] OAK

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  • John Vandermeulen
    Hello Steve, Actually I am a bluenoser , one of the hardy breed (ahem) of Nova Scotia, Atlantic coast of Canada. As for the measurements, I tend to mix them
    Message 1 of 3 , Dec 1, 2002
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      Hello Steve,
      Actually I am a 'bluenoser', one of the hardy breed (ahem) of Nova Scotia,
      Atlantic coast of Canada.
      As for the measurements, I tend to mix them up.
      As for the colour of corn likker, the reason folks down south tend to prefer the
      colourless variety is that it comes that way out of the still. So does malt
      whisky. The colouring comes from ageing in charred oak barrels. When the clear
      distillate is stored in those casks, the alcohol extracts a wide range of
      chemical compounds out of the wood and out of the thin layer of charcoal lining
      the inside of the barrel. Those compounds get added to the 'likker', and impart
      both colour and much of the flavour. Try a comparison of Maker's Mark with a
      shot straight out of the condenser - the difference is due to the wood.
      Nice talking to you, John

      Stevensgang@... wrote:

      > Hey! John! how are you doing?? Do you live in the USA? It seems from
      > the measurements you use that you do. Anyway the reason I
      > ask is I know around here if you are showing someone your 'corn likker'
      > that it must look like pure water. Or they will turn thier noses up at
      > it. Do
      > you put it on oak for the colour? Or flavor? Does it really make a
      > difference in flavour??
      > Steve
      >
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      >
      > ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
      >
      > Subject: [new_distillers] OAK
      > Date: Sun, 01 Dec 2002 10:24:15 -0400
      > From: John Vandermeulen <vandermeulen@...>
      > Reply-To: new_distillers@yahoogroups.com
      > To: new distillers <new_distillers@yahoogroups.com>
      >
      > Hello All,
      > Herewith some impressions of oaking. If you look at the attached photo you
      > will see two glass jars, one a rich brown (on left) and the other a more
      > greenish colouration (on right). Both jars were filled with identical corn
      > whisky distillate. Medium charred oak shavings were added to both. After
      > some 3 weeks both jars had a pale greenish-brown colouration, as seen in
      > the right-hand jar.
      >
      > However, I wanted a reddish brown colouration - so about a week ago I put a
      > sliver of charred oak into the left-hand jar, and you can see the result.
      > The small bit of oak is visible in the left photo. It is about 1/8" thick,
      > and 1"x2 1/2" in size. I had cut it off a piece of oak in my workshop, and
      > toasted it lightly with a propane torch to a uniform black colouration over
      > the whole piece.
      >
      > I suspect that the greenish colouring that I obtained initially is due to
      > the initial tbsp of oak shavings not having enough charring; that the
      > greenish colour is actually due to extracted components from the oak wood.
      > One reason for this is likely that it was sold to me in a plastic bag, and
      > that is the way I have it stored. Handling of the bag over time caused the
      > more brittle charred edges to break and crumble away from the whole
      > shavings. In future I will store my charred shavings in a sealed container
      > to prevent this from happening.
      >
      > It was an interesting little experiment. John
      >
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      > new_distillers-unsubscribe@onelist.com
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      > ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
      > [Image]
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