Can someone explain to me how to age in old bourbon casks. Thanks in advance
I start by making a big beer I think would work well with the flavour given by the oak, bourbon and anything else found in the cask, I do this in the normal way letting it ferment out and drop a bit in the FV.
Then I find time to get the barrels ready, I like to give them all a hot soak the day before, and allow the wood to expand therefore no leaks.
On the day of transfer I use a small rotating spray ball and hit the barrells hard with very hot water, I spin them over and drain, I often repeat this another time.
I then lay the barrells on a rig I made out of pressure treated lumber, I have the hoses and pump to a 90 elbow and a long tube which fits to the bottom of the barrell, I have on there a valve and a sight glass for help. I transfer the beer from the ferementer to the barrells and bung them but not so hard, If I had bungs with airlocks I would use them as I find for the next feww days the pressure and loss of CO2 will blow them off.
I usually allow them to age 6 -9 months, someone here explained me the way to get that wood flavor, and I think they are right, its to allow a seaonal change or two in the barrell to absorb the wood flavors.
Im a bit of a cheater so I actually make another batch and ferment it out and the a few days before packaging the barrel beer, I blend the two together for more volume. I think it works our well for me.
hope that helps some.