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Guys looking for some input into the suitability of different aging barrels for spirit usage.
I've made some calls and emailed a couple of barrel suppliers looking to grab at least one large one for long term whiskey storage and aging, but seems there are many choices and decisions to be made, as with everything we do in this hobby of ours!
I'm looking at 225 or 300 lt barrels, cost will be between $400-$600 from the looks of it, so getting it sort of right would be a good thing.
ex wine barrels, perhaps 5 yrs old or ex port barrels up to 30 yrs, then decide on cleaned/scraped, re-chared, or even fully re-manufactured from the wood stock. Chuck in choosing from French or American oak and it gets worse.
Some suppliers even tell me they don't like to use a tap either - the brass with alcohol issue raises it head again.
I have a fair bit of product that is currently aging in 54lt demi's, using @punkin's dominoes, I've settled on a mix of his American med and French, plus I do chuck a stick or 2 of left overs from a trial and comp pack he sent out to me. (Due for another order soon, been a while)
I'm thinking that I could dilute this down to 40% and finish it off the large barrel, then top it up with newer product as its ready, to maintain a consistent "blended" supply.
My wash is malted grain, wheat, barley, small amount of corn, liquid rye malt plus sugar, a malted whiskey light bourbon hybrid.
Aim is for Canadian Club style product.
I currently use this method but storage is in a stainless keg and works out ok.
Please add your thoughts and experience, should I go with my idea or all barrel - no dominoes, perhaps just get several 100lt barrels, French or American, char level, ex wine or ex port, reco or rebuilt etc.