Beer Quotes & Wisdom

Anyone can drink beer,

but it takes intelligence to enjoy beer.

--Stephen Beaumont

Friday, January 8, 2010

How Many Members Does It Take To Fill A Whiskey Barrel? Part2

Since it looks as though the challenge has been accepted on brewing a barrel-aged beer for the State Fair this year, we are now faced with several interesting problems.  For instance the care & feeding of an oak barrel.

Ron Smith of the FBI points out some concerns the clubs should have.


brewing and fermenting 50 gal of beer, which is hard enough to do, isn’t the only major consideration. I’m far from an expert on barrel aging, but I know some, and some other things to consider are…

--- How to clean, sanitize, seal and prep the barrel (and without blowing it up, like Gordon Strong did, injuring his leg).


--- The need for a barrel stand (the barrel must lay on its side and without a proper stand, the barrel can be damaged, leak, etc.) - >From what I understand, the way the barrel is cradled and how the weight and pressure is distributed is Very Important.

--- Mounting the barrel stand high enough for siphoning out of it (or “more likely” deciding to use pumps or CO2 pressure – but again, without blowing it up like Upland did).

--- Where to house the barrel during use (these are big a@# barrels, so not too many people have room to keep it period, let alone somewhere at the proper temp).

These are important considerations that may not have easy answers. This is a much bigger endeavor than what it may seem to be on the surface.

There is a link to the right to a PDF file under Brewing Reference Pages on the care & preperation of oak barrels that is a reprint from http://1000oaksbarrel.com/

The barrel empty weighs about 125lbs.  Mike R. has stepped up to retrieve the barrel.  Jon C. is giving it a home.  Now all we need to do is fill it.  As the time approaches, the brew day and the brew will be finallized.  Stay tuned.

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