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Our craftsman offer the highest quality product with exceptional service. Choose from: Black, Steel or Brass Hoops
There is no better Christmas gift than a personalized Oak Aging Barrel. Custom engraving available.
Whiskey (with skull and crossbones)
Handcrafted from American White Oak the barrels have a medium toast and come with the stand, bung, and wooden spigot. Perfect for aging Wine, Tequila, Brandy, Whiskey, Scotch, Bourbon, Cognac, or Wine Vinegar.
Choose Personalized Oak Barrel Size:
2 Liter 7.5" x 5" x 5" inches
5 Liter 9.5" x 6.5" x 6.5" inches
10 Liter 12" x 8" x 8" inches
20 Liter 15" x 10.5" x 10.5" inches
50 Liter 22" x 14" x 14"
Medium Bands: 6 bands
Free Accessories: Stand, Bung, Spigot and Swish Barrel Storing Tablets.
Curing your Barrel No glue or nails are used in the making of our barrels. As such, barrel preperation called "curing" is required prior to use. This process serves two functions; 1) Allows the barrel to swell to prevent leaking, and 2) Limits the amount of alcohol absorbed by the barrel. Start by placing the appropriate number of storing tablets in the barrel and filling the barrel with boiling or hot water. Allow it to soak for 3 to 5 days. Water may leak from between the staves or at the barrel head seam. This is normal and will stop within 24 hours as the wood swells. Barrels that do not leak should still be cured for 3 to 5 days. This will minimize the amount of alcohol absorbed by the barrel staves.
After curing the barrel, empty the solution and rinse with hot water 3 times. Now fill the barrel with your spirits and place the bung in tightly. ...Enjoy!
AGING SPIRITS In early wine history the amphora was the vessel of choice for the storage and transportation of wine. Due to the perishable nature of wood material it is difficult to trace the usage of barrels in history. The Greek historian Herodotus noted that ancient Mesopotamians used barrels made of palm wood to transport wine along the Euphrates. Palm is a difficult material to bend and fashion into barrels, however, and wine merchants in different regions experimented with different wood styles to find a better wood source. The use of oak has been prevalent in winemaking for at least two millennia, first coming into widespread use during the Roman empire.
In time, winemakers discovered that beyond just storage convenience that wine kept in oak barrels took on properties that improved the wine by making it softer and in some cases better-tasting. Robert Mondavi is credited with expanding the knowledge of winemakers in the United States about the different types of oak and barrel styles through his experimentation in the 1960s & 1970s. The porous nature of an oak barrel allows some levels of evaporation and oxygenation to occur in wine but typically not at levels that would cause oxidation or spoilage of the wine. In a year, the typical 59 gallon barrel can lose anywhere from 5 1/2 to 6 1/2 gallons of wine through the course of evaporation. This evaporation (of mostly alcohol and water) allows the wine to concentrate its flavor and aroma compounds. Small amounts of oxygen are allowed to pass through the barrel and acts as a softening agent upon the tannins of the wine. The chemical properties of oak itself can have a profound effect on the wine. Phenols within the wood interact with the wine to produce vanilla type flavors and can give the impression of tea notes or sweetness.
The degree of "toast" on the barrel can also impart different properties affecting the tannin levels of the wine as well as the aggressive wood flavors. The hydrolyzable tannins present in wood, known as ellagitannins, are derived from lignin structures in the wood. They help protect the wine from oxidation and reduction. Wines can be barrel fermented in oak or they can be placed in oak after fermentation for a period of aging or maturation. Wine that is matured in oak receives more of the oak flavors and properties than wine that is fermented in oak. This is because yeast cells interact with and "latch on" to the oak components. When the dead yeast cells are removed from the wine as lees some of these oak properties go with them. A characteristic of white wines that are fermented in oak include a pale color with an extra silky texture. White wines that are fermented in steel and then matured in oak will have a darker coloring due to the heavy phenolic compounds that are still present. Flavor notes that are common descriptions of wines exposed to oak include caramel, cream, smoke, spice and vanilla. Chardonnay is a variety that has very distinct flavor profiles when fermented in oak that include coconut, cinnamon and cloves notes. The "toastiness" of the barrel can bring out varying degrees of mocha and toffee notes in red wine.
The length of time that a wine spends in the barrel is dependent on the varietal and style of wine that the winemaker wishes to make. The majority of oak flavoring is imparted in the first few months that the wine is in contact with oak but a longer term exposure can affect the wine through the light aeration that the barrel allows which helps to precipitate the phenolic compounds and quickens the aging process of the wine. New World Pinot noir may spend less than a year in oak. Premium Cabernet Sauvignon may spend two years. The very tannic Nebbiolo grape may spend four or more years in oak. High end Rioja producers will sometimes age their wines up to ten years in American oak to get a desired earthy, vanilla character.
What are the barrels made from?
Our barrels are made from premium quality American White Oak. The staves are air dried for two years and all barrels have a medium char. How do I cure the barrel? Barrels should be cured prior to use. Start by filling the barrel with boiling or hot water and leave it to soak for 3 to 5 days. This allows the barrel to swell tightly against the hoops and ensure that the barrel doesn't leak.
Are glues or nails used to make the barrel?
No, our barrels are all hand crafted with no use of glues or nails.
How should the barrel be stored?
Barrels are best stored in a cool damp environment such as a wine cellar. This will keep the exterior from drying out and minimize evaporation (Angels Share).
How many times can I use my barrel?
With proper care, you can use your barrel for 8 to 10 years. Following the cleaning and re-charing instructions will insure a long life for your product and be sure to not let your barrel dry out. I left my barrel dry for an extented time.
Now it leaks... what do I do?
In many cases just re-cure the barrel. If it continues leaking, submerge the barrel in water for a couple of days. After it's been submerged, dry the exterior with a towel and fill it with water to see if it continues to leak. If so, find the leak and apply barrel wax to the hole... If you can't stop the leaking... cut in half and use as a planter!
How often do I clean my barrel?
When aging hard spirits such as whiskey, rum or tequila, clean the barrel after two or three batches (or every 1 to 2 years). For wine, cider, liquor or other low alcohol content spirits, clean after each batch.
How do I clean my barrel?
1) Dissolve the Barrel-Kleen into warm water. Fill the barrel with this cleaning solution and soak for 24 hours. Empty and rinse 3 times with hot water.
2) Dissolve the Neutralizing Acid into warm water. Fill the barrel with this neutralizing solution and soak for 15 minutes. Empty and rinse the barrel 3 times with hot water.
3) To re-char the barrel interior, drain the barrel for 3 hours. Place a butane torch in the bung and spigot hole and re-char the inside. To prevent the barrel from drying out and minimize the possibility of contamination, barrels should always be stored full with spirits or water with sterilizing solution.
***See cleaning package directions for exact mixture quantities.
How do I store my barrel?
When storing the barrel fill the barrel with a mixture of sterilizing tablets and cool water. Fill the barrel with the solution and leave in a cool damp place until you are ready to use again.
How long do I age my spirits?
There's no formula for the perfect time to age your spirits. Age to taste! We suggest you taste your spirits every week and once aged to YOUR taste, start drinking or move it to a glass bottle to stop the aging process.
Do smaller barrels age the spirit faster than large barrels?
Yes... due to the greater surface or contact area ratio, small size barrels will age 5 to 10 times faster then your standard 55 gallon barrel. These means that one month in a small barrel will produce the equivalent aging to 1 to 1 1/2 years in a full size barrel.